Williamston Community Schools considering cell phone policy this fall

Print More

The Williamston Community School Board recently brought attention to a potential new cell phone policy for the 2024-2025 academic year. The school currently has no policy regarding cell phones and their usage while in session

The board has three options: leaving the policy as is, remove phones during class time, or completely ban phones for the duration of the school day. The second option of removing phones during class time is centered towards less distractions in the classroom. However, the third option to remove all phone usage during the school day is aimed at improving the mental health of students.

The board’s forefront for the phone use limit is centered around the mental health crisis among adolescents.  

During the meeting Superintendent Adam Spina said, “There is abundant research indicating that smart devices are, if not responsible for, a key component to some of the mental health crises we’re seeing throughout the country.”

The current teaching staff at Williamston High School implemented individual phone rules for each of their classes since an overruling one does not exist.

“We have some teachers that use a pocket chart and other teachers who restrict any phone usage,” said School Board President Nancy Deal. “And then we have others that just don’t have anything.”

The phone restriction initiative stemmed from teachers seeking information on the authority they have regarding taking a phone if it has become a distraction.

“There is this fine line with taking things away from students that the school doesn’t purchase.” Deal said.

The new phone policy would cover the district as a whole to solidify a standard model of phone usage throughout the school day. Currently, high school has free reign of when they are allowed phone usage, the middle school is permitted usage during free time and the elementary schools are permitted no usage.

The school board will need to make a decision on their new phone policy by April 1 for it to be implemented in the policy handbook for the fall 2024 semester.

For more information contact the Williamston School Board at (517) 655-4361 or e-mail WCSBoard@gowcs.net. The next school board meeting will be on March 18 at 6 p.m. in the Williamston Middle School Multi-Purpose room.

 “These are young adults that need to start learning responsibility and how to juggle managing phone time,” Trustee David Indish said. “Having them learn that in a school environment does have some value.”

Comments are closed.