CCS new phone policy during emergencies
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (CBS19 NEWS) -- Earlier this week, Charlottesville City Schools listed changes concerning student cell phone use at some schools. Some parents aren't too happy about the new policy.
The policy aims to keep phones and personal devices put away throughout the school day.
CCS defines personal devices as phones, smartwatches, and headphones.
The division says this policy has been instituted because devices can distract from learning and harm mental well-being.
They say staff will model this behavior so that they will be fully present for their students.
One parent with kids in Charlottesville elementary schools, Sage Bowyer, worries about them not having access to their phones in emergencies.
"I think that a child should be able to call their parents to come up there and get them. If they try to say that my kid can't have their phone, I'm going to be like, 'Yes, they can. I'm their parent. They're going to have their phone,'" said Bowyer.
In the announcement, CCS says during safety protocols or bad weather, administrators will send students, staff, and families factual info as soon as possible.
Beth Cheuk with CCS says they are developing plans and listening to the community.
"This is an issue that across the country people have very different opinions about, and so we need to make sure that we are listening and answering questions and find the answers to people's questions. We're not going to immediately have all the answers, but there are schools that have been using this program for several years and they're just farther ahead of us and we want to learn from their experiences," she said.
Later this fall, students at Charlottesville High School, Buford Middle School and Lugo-McGinness Academy will be able to start using special magnetic pouches to store their devices. These pouches will snap closed and be unlocked at the end of the day.
To help families with this new policy, CCS is holding meetings about it. To find where they are being held and the times, click here.