The Tasmanian government has announced it will ban students from using mobile phones during school hours in all public schools across the state, saying the move will create a better learning environment for students. From the second semester next year, students from primary school to 12 will be asked to turn off their mobile phones from the school gate until they are out of school. The state government said the ban would be reviewed 12 months later.
Jeremy Rockliff, the education and training secretary, said: “While electronic devices have a place in learning, we also need to recognise that when the use of electronic devices is not regulated, there can be problems such as cyberbullying and serious distractions. “
“Importantly, some schools have imposed a ban, and principals have reported an increase in student welfare and more face-to-face interaction between students. I want all Tasmanian schools to do the same. “
Figures released last week by the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) show that 32 per cent of Australian children own a mobile phone in 2018, while another 16 per cent have access to it. In August, the Victorian government pledged A$12 million to help schools provide storage solutions to securely store students’ mobile phones. Each school can apply for grants that can be used as safe storage resources, such as the purchase and improvement of existing lockers or new padlocks.