Chilton High School Adjusts Student Cell Phone Use Expectations
First published on 03 September 2009 Posted in CHS News & Press Releases
Chilton High School Principal, Dr. Timothy J. Schaid, informed students on the first day of the2009/2010 school year that there has been a slight change to the expectations the school will have of students regarding cell phone usage. The change is that this year students will continue to be permitted to bring the cell phones to school; however, the phones must be off and stored in the student’s locker during classes. Students are permitted to use their cell phones before and after school, during passing periods, and during lunch. Cell phones are not permitted in the school library at any time of the day. This change was made after the 2009/2010 Parent/Student Handbooks were printed. Parents and students should make the applicable change in their handbook.
Dr. Schaid told students that he believes it is necessary for students to have cell phones in school because there is no pay telephone and he believes students need to have a way to stay in touch with parents regarding unplanned transportation needs, for safety reasons, and/or to inform parents of changes to after school practices and events so that alternative transportation arrangements can be made.
The change, however, is due to continued difficulties many students had adhering to the previous expectation that cell phones needed to be off and out of sight during classes. Many students ignored this rule, which resulted in students secretly sending text messages during class and/or cell phones ringing during class, which created a disruption to the learning environment. Dr. Schaid told students they need to realize that being permitted to have cell phones in school is a privilege, but it carries with it the responsibility of making sure the privilege is not abused. It is hoped that tightening the privilege up a bit by expecting students to leave their phones in their lockers while in class will keep this privilege available to students in the future.
Dr. Schaid also informed students that he has instructed the staff to impose the following consequences on students who fail to adhere to the new expectations:
- First Offense: The cell phone will be confiscated for one day; if the offense happens in the morning, the phone will be returned to the student at the end of the day; if the offense occurs in the afternoon, the phone will be returned to the student the next morning (or first school day of the following week if the offense occurs during the afternoon on last day of a school week)
- Second Offense: The cell phone will be confiscated for the remainder of the week ( if the offense occurs on the last school day of the week, the phone will be returned to the student on the first school day of the following week)
- Third Offense: The cell phone will be confiscated and sent to the office along with a behavior referral. School administrators will contact the parents and arrange for a parent conference at which time the phone will be turned over to parents with the understanding that adherence to school expectations regarding cell phone use will be followed
- Subsequent Offenses: The cell phone will be confiscated, parents will be contacted, and more severe consequences imposed to include, but not limited to, suspension from school and/or a recommendation to the Board of Education for expulsion from school
Dr. Schaid is confident that students will respond well to the new expectations and will work hard to maintain the privilege of being able to have cell phones in school. Schaid said, “The quality of our students is so high that I have no doubt they will have little to no trouble adhering to these new expectations. Our students are a ‘class act,’” Schaid said.