Changes to school cell phone policies

Little Rock (KATV) - As the new school year quickly approaches, so do new policies on cell phone use for students. For the first time, North Little Rock will allow cell phones during class. Their new policy states phones are permitted before or after school, during lunch, or when given permission from an instructor. "In most instances, [cell phones] are a curriculum necessity, if they're carrying a computer in their pocket why not let them use it," said Dr. Beth Stewart, deputy superintendent of the North Little Rock School District. KATV reached out to several other school districts in the Little Rock metro area to ask what their current policy is on students using cell phones in the class room. At the Pulaski Special School District, the policy states a student can have a cell phone, but it cannot be visible. The Little Rock School District doesn't allow cell phones unless prior written authorization for the use of the cell phone is obtained. Benton and Bryant allow phones in class once given permission from the teacher, but they're never to be used for recreation. Cabot's phone policy varies from grade level; cell phones are not allowed in elementary schools, they are allowed in middle schools but they can't be visible and they're only allowed in high school when class isn't in session. In Conway, cell phones are not permitted unless the student is given the okay by the proper authority. "Today's students are media rich, that's how they learn," said Stewart. Stewart said when you allow a student to use their cell phone during lunch or when given permission, discipline decreases. Teachers are spending too much time disciplining students because of using their cell phones. For further explanation on your school districts cell phone policy you can check your district's student handbook.