Summer School Cell Phones

Summer School Cell Phones

With mental health and academic performance in mind:
No cell phone use in classrooms for summer school announced

Dr. Clinton Alexander sent a message to students and families attending summer school explaining that HF is taking a significant step toward enhancing student mental health and academic performance by implementing a new practice that prohibits cell phone use in classrooms. This initiative aims to foster a more focused and supportive learning environment.

When students arrive for summer school on June 10, they will find cell phone storage cabinets in all summer school classrooms. Students will place their cell phones in the box during class time to limit distractions to learning. This practice supports the longstanding Board Policy 7:190 which requires cell phones to be powered off or out of sight during instructional time. Students will still have access to their cell phones during breaks and non-instructional time.

Dr. Alexander, who is an advocate for student well-being and academic excellence, stated, "Our primary goal is to create an optimal learning environment where students can engage fully with their education and peers. Reducing cell phone distractions in the classroom is a critical step toward achieving this goal."

The decision to enact this practice during class time is supported by research. A study conducted by the London School of Economics found that schools which implemented cell phone bans saw a significant improvement in student test scores, with the effects being most pronounced among low-achieving students. The research indicates that removing the distraction of cell phones can lead to an increase in focus and academic performance.

In addition to academic benefits, reducing cell phone use has been shown to positively impact student mental health. Research published in the Journal of Adolescent Health highlights that excessive smartphone use is linked to increased anxiety, depression, and sleep disturbances among teenagers. By limiting cell phone access during school hours, Homewood-Flossmoor High School aims to mitigate these negative effects and promote a healthier, more balanced lifestyle for its students.

The new practice will be piloted during summer school and its impact will be reviewed to determine if the practice will continue in the regular school year.  Students and families will be informed of specific guidelines on when and where students can use their cell phones, with the intent to minimize distractions. Emergency situations and specific educational activities will still allow for controlled cell phone use.

"We understand that cell phones are an integral part of modern life, but our priority is the academic success and mental well-being of our students," Dr. Alexander added. "We believe this practice will help students develop better concentration, reduce anxiety, and ultimately improve their overall school experience."

For further information, please contact:

Homewood-Flossmoor High School

Principal Dr. Clinton Alexander

Email: [email protected]