Orlando Local News

Orange County Schools to decide possible cell phone ban this week

todayJuly 31, 2023

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ORLANDO, Fla. — The Orange County School Board is considering a policy requiring all students to have their phones turned off and concealed when attending classes – which begin in a little more than a week.

The phones would remain concealed the entire day including during recess and students would only be able to access them if there is an emergency.

What You Need To Know

  • Orange County School Board considering banning cell phone use during school hours

  • Students would have phones concealed and turned off while in classroom

  • Phones could be used only for emergencies and teacher directed projects

  • Ban would apply to smartwatches and ear buds

Many parents are helping their children get ready for the new school year right now.

Kristin Skolnik has two children going to middle school next week in Orange County.

She feels the ban is a good idea.

“While they go to school, there does not need to be a distraction.  They need to focus on their schoolwork,” said Skolnik.

Kristin packed a cell phone for her two children every day last school year and has always told both kids the phone is only for emergency use. 

“They can use their phones if there is an emergency, they can use them.  Then after school they have access to all those fun videos they like to watch,” she said.

Billy White, who teaches 7th grade math at Cornerstone Academy in Orlando says the use of cell phones has not been a problem in his classroom.

White says he has never allowed cell phones to be left on in the classroom except for school projects.  

“The cell phones are not an issue because they are put away.  Sometimes you may do a class project where you may allow kids to use their calculators and search up stuff.  But other than that, it’s not a big deal, “said White.

White has taught at Cornerstone for the past 10 years and knows of no problems at his school concerning teachers, students and cell phones.

He says there may be some schools in the district that have different circumstances and may need the phones and he backs whatever the school board decides.

The changes would apply to smartwatches and ear buds.

The code of student conduct is on the agenda for Tuesday’s school board meeting.

No actions have been taken at this time.

Written by: admin

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