Mobile Device Policy

SHS Acceptable Use Policy for Mobile Devices

Key Messages

  • Mobile devices must be switched off and put away with the exception of during break and lunch

  • Mobile devices (including headphones/earphones) must not be used whilst walking through the school or moving between classes

  • Mobile devices must be used responsibly and in accordance with this policy.

  1. Purpose

The widespread ownership of mobile devices among young people requires that young people, school leaders, teachers and parents/carers take steps to ensure that mobile devices are used responsibly in school. This policy is designed to ensure that potential issues involving mobile devices can be clearly identified and addressed, ensuring the benefits that mobile devices provide (such as increased safety and greater learning opportunities) can continue to be enjoyed by our learners.

An adapted policy may be necessary for trips and excursions.

We make the distinction between using mobile devices to enhance learning (with teacher permission) and using mobile devices recreationally (social media and listening to music).

  1. Rationale

The school accepts that mobile devices are an integral part of modern day life.

Stirling High School accepts that parents/carers give their children mobile devices to protect them from everyday risks involving personal security and safety.

Parents/carers are reminded that in cases of emergency, the school office remains the only point of contact and can ensure your child is reached quickly and assisted in any appropriate way.

All young people have been issued with their own Chromebook. No young person is disadvantaged if they choose not to bring a mobile device to school.

  1. Responsibility

3.1. It is the responsibility of young people who bring mobile devices to school to follow the guidelines outlined in this policy.

3.2. Learners and parents are responsible for the appropriate care and security of their mobile devices.

3.3. It is the responsibility of learners to ensure mobile devices do not disrupt classroom lessons.

  1. Acceptable Uses

4.1. The school recognises the importance of digital technologies and has provided a Chromebook to every young person. At times, teachers and learners may want to utilise functions of a mobile device to further aid learning and teaching and learners may have the opportunity to use their mobile devices in the classroom. On these occasions pupils may use their mobile devices responsibly in the classroom when express permission has been given by the teacher.

It is a useful life skill for young people to learn how to limit and control access to their mobile phones. Evidence has shown that just having a phone visible on a desk can significantly reduce attainment since it serves to distract. It will also improve young people’s self-regulation and help them switch it off at other times and even help them to improve sleep.

  1. Unacceptable Uses

Learners, on their own or as part of a wider group, must not use a mobile device to engage in personal attacks, harass other persons, post private information about other persons, use SMS messages, take/send/upload or share photos or objectionable images, or make threatening phone calls. This also includes using mobile devices to photograph or film anyone without their consent. Learners using mobile devices irresponsibly against other learners will face disciplinary action.

[It should be noted that it is a criminal offence to use a mobile device to menace, harass or offend another person. The school may consider it appropriate to involve the police.]

  1. Theft or Damage

6.1. Mobile devices should not be left in bags that are unattended. To reduce the risk of theft during school hours, learners who carry mobile devices are advised to keep them well concealed and not ‘advertise’ that they have them.

6.2. Mobile devices that are found in the school and whose owner cannot be located should be handed to the school office.

6.3. The school accepts no responsibility for replacing lost, stolen or damaged mobile devices.

6.4. It is strongly advised that learners use passwords/pin numbers to ensure that unauthorised phone calls cannot be made on their devices (e.g. by other learners, or if stolen).

  1. Inappropriate Conduct Under Exam Conditions

Any learner found using a mobile device in exams or assessments will face disciplinary action including having their assessment invalidated. In any SQA exam, the Chief Invigilator will report the incident to the SQA. In such a case, the learner risks not being credited with that exam result or indeed any exam result in that diet. Mobile phones are not permitted in SQA exam rooms even if switched off.

  1. Sanctions - using a mobile device without permission

8.1. Learners who use mobile devices without prior permission will be asked to turn the device off and put it away out of sight.

8.2. Young people who continue to use their mobile device will be issued with a verbal warning and demerit recorded.

8.3. Continual refusal will result in a referral and home contact being made in the usual manner.

  1. Sanctions - using a mobile device irresponsibly to harm another person

9.1. Learners who use mobile devices in this way will face possible exclusion from school until a parent/carer can attend school for a meeting. Where a law is broken, the incident will be reported to the police.

Revised: August 2021