Call for ban on mobiles in the classroom

MOBILE phones should be banned in classrooms to stop pupils being distracted and misbehaving, according to the Tories.

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Figures from councils show thousands of cases of children being disciplined over mobile phone use in class.

The party's education spokesman Mary Scanlon said parents and teachers want tough action to enable the focus to be on teaching.

The Tories obtained details of how many pupils were reprimanded concerning using mobiles in class for several councils.

They found that in the 12 councils who collected figures there were 2175 incidents recorded.

The highest was in Fife were action was taken on 1159 occasion.

Glasgow City Council did not have figures to release. Renfrewshire reported the second highest at 338.

Ms Scanlon said a total ban was not necessary but phones should be handed over before classes begin.

She said: "In the classroom, the priority has to be the lesson in hand. It is simply too easy for a pupils to access a mobile phone in their pocket, distracting themselves and others in the process.

"This is something parents and teachers want to see us get tough on. It should very much be the norm that mobile phones are handed over at the classroom door.

"An outright ban on phones from school premises would be excessive, particularly as children may need to contact parents at home time."

With more than half of the countries councils including some of the largest like Glasgow, North Lanarkshire and Edinburgh not providing details the part believes the true figure will be far higher, demanding action.

Ms Scanlon added: "Children must learn to use phones in the right way, not view them as a permanent commodity they cannot live without.

"I would urge councils to improve the way they monitor phone use in the classroom."

Local government

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