Buckle up, Cedar Park! Next week marks a significant change in the student cell phone policy here at CPMS. This Off and Away ALL DAY policy begins next Tuesday, 1/29.
Here's a quick review:
Students are no longer able to access phones during passing time or lunch.
Students are asked to not have their phones with them during the day, but as long as phones are off, away and out of sight, there will be no problems.
Students are not allowed to wear earbuds throughout the building; earbuds will need to be kept in their AVID binder so they can access them when needed for chromebook use.
Cell Phone Policy FAQ
What if I need to contact my student during the day?
We understand that there are times when you need to send a message to your student. Unfortunately, calling a cell phone or texting your student during class really puts the student in a difficult situation where the adults are asking her/him to choose to follow school rules but ignore a parent, or acknowledge the parent and break school rules that may lead to consequences.
If you need to contact your student we ask that you call the front desk - we can either get a note to your student or have the student call you from the front office.
What if there is an emergency at school, and I need to know what is going on?
This is a common question and fear, but experience in BSD and nationally has taught us that during an emergency, students texting and calling parents often makes the situation worse.
Additionally, emergency response groups have advised that in a lockdown situation, a cell phone ringing or lighting up may actually alert an assailant to a student’s location, increasing the danger level.
Furthermore, students rarely have the correct information and often cause parents unnecessary panic, not to mention it ties up communication lines that need to be open for emergency and official use. In any emergency, you will receive official, accurate updates from the school, district office, and/or police department.
What happens if my child does not follow this expectation and has a phone out during the day?
*January 29-February 1:Students will be given a warning if they have their phone out. The entire student body will be reminded 3 times about the change in policy this week via announcements.
*February 4th: Students with their phones out in class, the hallway, in the lunchroom, or out on the fields will be sent to the office to turn in their phones for the remainder of the day, if it is their first offense. They may pick up their phone at the end of the day. The student body will be reminded of the policy change 3 times this week via announcements.
*February 11: Students will turn their phone in to the office and a parent will be required to pick up the phone, regardless of previous warnings or absence thereof. In addition, Advisory teachers will discuss the new policy and practice with their Advisory class.
*Additional violations will result in additional disciplinary consequences.
Why are you no longer allowing cell phones to be used at school?
We have seen an increase in cell phone misuse in class and throughout the day. CPMS admins and staff also believe that these formative years are important in teaching our future leaders how to communicate and build relationships in the real world.
What about before school hours and after school hours (such as during after school clubs)?
Phones are expected to be off and away from the time students enter the building until the time they exit the building. This includes before class starts and during after school clubs.
Is Cedar Park the only school implementing this change?
No. Most of the BSD middle schools already have the same policy.