ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — There’s no denying cellphones are a big part of our everyday lives.
“Cell phones are not going away. We know that. They are here to stay,” said Kyle Belokopitsky, Executive Director of the New York State Parent Teacher Association.
So that begs the question, should cellphone usage be restricted in schools and should it be done on a state or local level? The New York State Education Department says cell phone policy decisions are made at the school and/or district level. The New York State Parent Teacher Association encourages schools to have a policy.
“Whether you allow them out during free time again those policies have to be developed at the local level each school district all 750 of them are very different,” said Belokopitsky.
Recently, one New York State school district decided that starting in September, high school students would need to keep their phones sealed during the school day with a magnetized locking device.
In a mock hearing at the legislative office building in Albany on Friday, a group of 12 students made up from Assemblyman Angelo Santabarbara’s district in Schenectady and Montgomery Counties discussed this very issue and whether the state should have more involvement.
After listening to testimony from the New York State PTA, law enforcement, and school leaders, the students shared their thoughts and ultimately came to a consensus that the issue should be left up to the districts.