Quebec to Enforce Cellphone Ban in Classrooms Starting Dec. 31
The directive aims to diminish disruptions during classes and covers public elementary and secondary schools. However, teachers retain the authority to permit phone usage for specific educational purposes.
Education Minister Bernard Drainville introduced the ban after existing school cellphone restrictions. While some schools had rules limiting phone use, a petition urged tougher measures.
Étienne Bergeron, a high school teacher, initiated the petition, calling for a complete ban on personal devices across school premises.
Bergeron emphasizes the need for well-defined pedagogical purposes if cellphones are to be allowed in class, expressing concerns about aimless online usage.
Quebec’s Education Department mandates schools to adopt policies restricting cellphone use, leaving school boards to decide penalties for rule violators.
Some boards, like Centre de services scolaire de Montréal, have long-standing bans on cellphones in classes. However, Ontario faces challenges enforcing its 2019 ban.
Experts and parent groups support the ban, aligning with global jurisdictions that reported positive outcomes after implementing similar bans.
However, some critics believe courses on digital citizenship and technology usage could be more impactful than a mere ban.
The move, influenced by concerns about disruptions to learning, follows global precedents like France and China banning phones in schools.