RESTRICTING the use of mobile phones in public schools could be on the cards if the Labor Government is elected next year, and this is a policy that Kelso High School has already seen the benefits of.
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Since 2019, students have not been allowed to use their phones at all during school hours.
This rule was implemented to help students focus more on learning and to also encourage better communication and interactions during break times.
"I think there is a legitimate addiction to technology," Kelso High School principal Mick Sloan said.
"I think there's a time and a place for mobile phones, and the time and the place is not during school. That's certainly how we feel about it and it certainly has been quite successful."
The response from parents has been mixed, some agree with the policy, some don't, and others don't mind either way.
The school adopted the use of yondr pouches, little cases that lock phones inside, and every student was given one.
Mr Sloan said the expectation is that students have their phones in their pouches and unlock them at the end of the school day.
"It's helping our learning environments and it's helping the socialisation of the students," he said.
"Students are working, they're not distracted by their phones, they're not messaging, they're not playing games."
Aside from removing the distraction during classes, Mr Sloan said he has seen a significant difference in how students interact during break times.
Instead of just looking at their phones, they are talking, becoming more physically active, and there is less conflict in Mr Sloan's opinion.
"There was a lot more conflict I believe because if there was anything going on the kids could communicate with each other really quickly," he said.
"We're actually seeing many more students talking to each other, we're seeing students positively sitting in groups, playing basketball or handball or just walking around talking instead of on their phones, head down, phone screen in front of their face.
"That's been as important as the learning benefits."
While Mr Sloan did not comment on the politics surrounding the possible introduction of the policy, in Kelso High School's experience it has been a positive change.
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