Canadian province of Ontario to ban cellphones in class from September

14 March, 2019, 18:21 | Author: Sammy Rose
  • Ontario to ban cellphones in classrooms

According to The Canadian Press, the provincial government is planning to announce this week its intention to ban cellphones from Ontario classrooms.

"By banning cellphone use that distracts from learning, we are helping students to focus on acquiring the foundational skills they need like reading, writing, and math", Thompson said.

Ontario's students need to be able to focus on their learning - not their cellphones.

No formal announcement has been made yet.

NDP MPP Ian Arthur said his party supports the idea in general but teachers and school boards now have the power to ban cellphones.

"When the school day starts, the phones go off", one senior government source said.

The Green party questioned why a government focused on cutting red tape is introducing "a top-down regulation that complicates things for educators on the front line".

At the Greater Essex County District School Board, Superintendent of Education John Howitt said his board has had procedures in place for the use of personal electronic devices since 2010.

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"I don't want to bring my electronics to school because, if it gets stolen or if it breaks, I don't want to be responsible for that", says Matteo Daher.

Doug Ford's Tories proposed the ban during last year's election campaign.

Some in the education field have said the new policy really doesn't change much as teachers haven't been allowing inappropriate use of phones in class.

"What I think is problematic is when people use their phones to text their friends either within the classroom or outside the classroom - and would not be condoned for use for the teacher".

"Students need to be discerning digital citizens and opportunities should be provided within the curriculum to allow students to safely explore various uses and risks of technology in an intentionally guided and supportive environment", the association wrote.

"Minister Eggen trusts Alberta's teachers and school boards to make their own rules regarding the use of cellphones in their classrooms", he said Tuesday.

Just across the country, a Victoria middle school became the first school in its district to ban cellphones in school when it implemented the policy for the 2018-19 school year.

"There are still fundamentals that teachers aren't able to perform their daily tasks of teaching [to] children because there are so many distractions in the classrooms", Kehoe says. These improvements were mostly demonstrated among the students who were typically "low achieving".

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