NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Mayor Bill de Blasio is planning to lift a ban on cellphones in New York City public schools, sources told CBS2 Tuesday evening.
The lifting of the ban would affect some 1.1 million students in the school system, sources told CBS2.
It would be replaced with a new cellphone plan in which each school would be able to choose a range of options for students, sources said.
Under one plan, students would be asked to store mobile devices in their backpacks or another designated location during the school day. Under another, they would be allowed to use their cellphones during lunch or in designated areas only, and under a third, cellphones would be allowed for instructional purposes in some or all classrooms, sources said.
Principals and teachers at each school would decide on the best option.
The New York City Parents Union endorsed the idea, saying it has been championing a lift on the cellphone ban for years.
“As parents, we will feel more comfortable knowing we can keep in contact with our children while they are commuting to school,” the union said in a news release. “Moreover, we are glad this unfair policy will be abolished, since it primarily disenfranchised students in communities of color.”
The ban would also relieve parents of having to pay to have their children’s cellphones with outside storage truck vendors, New York City Parents Union vice president Sam Pirozzolo said in a news release.
Schools will also increase education and training to identify and prevent cyberbullying, and to foster responsible digital device use among students, sources said.
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