Schoharie students must now lock away phones for entire school day

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The Schoharie Central School District will no longer allow students to use their phones during school hours.

This decision was made by the district last month and takes effect in September.

Not only can a phone be a distraction when kids are learning, but what really made the district come to this decision is because of TikTok challenges and cyberbullying.

For the upcoming school year, phones will be put in a small pouch that locks when it’s closed and won’t be opened until the end of the school day.

The district is buying these pouches from a company called Yondr for $10,000.

The principal for the middle and high school students, Kevin Calacone, says problems with phones started last fall and really became a big issue by March.

The TikTok challenges asked kids to vandalize school property. The challenges then escalated to daring students to call in school shooting threats.

The principal says students would also film fights in school and put them on social media.

The administration says there is a phone in every room of the school. Anyone will be able to easily call 911 if needed.

You can get ahold of your child through the school, if need be. The school will have the child come down to the main office, use the house phone, use their phone, and they’ll be able to connect them with their family.

There will be a public meeting on August 10 in the school auditorium for any parents to tell the district what they think of the new policy.

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The principal says the policy is still considered to be a draft. That means tweaks can be made to the new rule before it starts in September.