School Policy on Mobile Devices - A Guide for Pupils
Almost all pupils now own and carry a mobile device to school for personal safety, keeping in contact with parents, listening to music, accessing the internet and social media.
Teachers in Graeme High are developing creative ways in which we use of this technology in learning and teaching. For example, in Art, devices are being used to photograph pieces of public art and buildings. The resulting graphics can then be used as part of course work.
Many pupils now use devices to access Microsoft Teams which gives them the facility to have online access to materials at home or in school.
Our recent Pupil Voice Conferences highlighted some pupil concerns regarding the negative impact of mobile devices. You may also be aware that some schools and local authority councils have banned the carrying of mobile device. This is because some pupils have used their devices inappropriately, and growing evidence that some pupils find them a distraction.
The purpose of this leaflet is to give you guidance about what is and what is not acceptable in Graeme High School.
Some simple guidelines for you to follow:
- If you carry a mobile device it is entirely your own responsibility. You must look after it and make sure that it is not lost or stolen. Do not lend it to anybody else. It may be misused by them. The school will take no responsibility for lost or stolen phones.
- Unless directed by your teacher you may only use your mobile device outside of class time before registration, during break and lunch time.
- Before entering a class your mobile device must be switched off completely. It is not acceptable to have your device switched to silent or vibrate as this can still distract you and others sitting close to you.
- Your device should be stored securely in your bag and out of sight. Never leave your phone lying on a desk or in your jacket pocket.
- Unless your teacher has expressly asked you to use your device as part of the lesson, you are not permitted to bring your phone out in class at any time for any reason.
- You are not permitted to take pictures or video clips of staff or other pupils at any time - unless you have their permission.
- It is completely unacceptable for you to send pictures or video clips of pupils to internet websites or to use the school’s name to link to such clips. This includes any pictures or video clips taken outside of our school.
- You should never send any text message that may be considered offensive or “bullying”.
- If you receive an offensive or “bullying” text message at school, do not reply to it. Store the message and show it immediately to your DHH or DHT. If you receive one at home, tell your parent and contact the police if appropriate. Do not delete the message.
- Keep your mobile phone number, email and passwords secure. Do not give them out to other pupils who are not your close friends. Insist that your friends do not pass on your number or email under any circumstances.
- To protect yourself against inappropriate messages or pictures being sent to you anonymously by Bluetooth, do not give your device a name that identifies it to you and do not have your phone visible on Bluetooth.
- Never bring your mobile device or smartwatch into your prelim or SQA Examinations. Should you break this rule you risk being removed from examinations completely. Invigilators are very strict about this.
- It is not acceptable for you to contact a parent/carer because you are being disciplined by a teacher. Your DHH or DHT will contact your parent if necessary at an appropriate time.
What happens if you break the rules?
- You will be asked to switch the device off and put it away.
- Should you fail to do this, or you have had your device out during class time on a number of occasions, you will be instructed to hand your device to the teacher. You can collect it from the school office at the end of the day.
- If your phone rings during class time, you will be instructed to hand it to the teacher. You can collect it from the school office at the end of the day. If this happens a second time, your DHH or DHT will be informed and your phone will be kept in the office until collected by your parent/carer.
- Any incidents of bullying or offensive behaviour using mobile devices within school will be treated under our normal discipline policy. In serious incidents this may involve the police being contacted.
- Anyone who is involved in recording incidents of any sort, or showing such videos to fellow pupils puts themselves at risk of exclusion from school and the police will be contacted immediately.
The Council monitors websites on a regular basis to ensure that no-one is using the school’s name in any video or picture images, inappropriate or otherwise.
The vast majority of young people use their mobile devices sensibly. Please adhere to these guidelines and we will be happy to continue to allow mobile devices in school.