Jeremy Rockliff,Minister for Education and Training
Mobile phones will be banned during school hours at Tasmanian Government schools in a bid to reduce distraction in the classroom and encourage greater student interaction in the schoolyard.
As part of the policy, students from Primary School to Year 12 will be required to have their phones “off and away all day” from bell to bell.
This is a part of the Hodgman majority Liberal Government’s commitment to providing the best possible learning environment for students.
While electronic devices have a place in learning, we also need to acknowledge the issues that can occur when their use is not regulated such as cyberbullying and serious distraction.
The decision follows significant consultation with educators, students and their families, and brings Tasmania in line with other states which have moved to impose restrictions on mobile phones.
Importantly, a number of schools have already implemented a ban with Principals reporting an increase in student wellbeing and more face to face interaction between students.
I want this for all Tasmanian schools.
The ban will be implemented from term two next year, with a review to be undertaken after twelve months. Years 11 and 12 will retain an ‘opt out’ option, subject to approval of and in consultation with their School Association.
Exemptions will be made for special circumstances such as where a student needs to monitor a health condition, or is under the direct instruction of a teacher for educational purposes.
The Hodgman majority Liberal Government is continuing to deliver our long term Plan for education, which includes our commitment to lifting educational outcomes.