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Greece schools silence student cell phones

Aug 1, 2018

Credit Beth Adams/WXXI News

Cell phones will be off limits for students in the Greece Central School district starting this fall.

The new policy says the personal devices have to be turned off and stored out of sight during class time.  Students who violate the rule will have their phone taken away during the school day.

Olympia Middle and High Schools had already given teachers the option of banning cell phones in classrooms for the past two years.

Principal Marc Fleming said virtually every high school student owns a device, and they are distracting.

"Not all students have the same type of cell phone, though,” he said. “Many of them have great smart phones that can do lots of different things. But not all students have that, so I think that equity component is why the district moved in this direction, as well."

This coming school year, every Greece student will get a Google Chromebook to use in class and take home.

"Which is essentially a stripped-down laptop,” said Fleming. “It'll have all the educational apps and tools they need to do some really high level learning in the classroom, but it won't give students the opportunity to access the social medial tools they don't need for instruction."

Fleming says students will be able to share documents with other classes and other schools, and even connect with students in other parts of the world.