North Star Academy (the “School”) recognizes that electronic devices are widely used and are important tools in today’s society. The purpose of this policy is to ensure that the use of electronic devices does not interfere with the learning, safety, and security of other students.
- “Electronic Devices” means beepers, pages, cell phones with or without video or picture-taking capability, MP3 players, iPods, and other electronic media.
- “School day” means the hours that make up the school day according to the School’s schedule.
- “School-sponsored activities” means field trips, curricular and extracurricular activities, and extended school-sponsored trips or activities, including school-provided transportation to and from such activities.
- “Pass time” means the period designated in secondary schools between classes or to allow students to move between classrooms.
- “Recess” means time periods designated in elementary school for exercise or outside activity.
- “Lunch time” means time periods in either elementary or secondary schools designated for lunch.
- “Instructional time” means the hours during the school day designated by the school for class instruction.
Use of Electronic Devices
- Students may NOT have electronic devices in their possession during the school day or during after-school educational labs (including, but not limited to Math, English or Computer labs).
- Students may have electronic devices in their possession at school sponsored activities at the discretion of the school employee facilitating the activity.
- An electronic device turned off and stored in a student’s locker or backpack is NOT considered in their possession.
The Administration may give permission for a student to possess an electronic device for good cause, including medical reasons, if the device does not distract from the instructional or educational process and is not otherwise used inappropriately.
Parents may request that a student possess an electronic device on active mode at all times during the school day, with the exception of during tests and standardized assessments. The Administration may grant such requests that are based on good cause, including medical needs or unusual family situations.
The Administration may permit a student to possess an electronic device at all times during the regular school day, including during assessments, based on a written § 504 plan, an IEP, or legitimate circumstances determined by the individual teacher.
Electronic devices may be used in the event of an emergency during the limited period of the emergency in order to protect the safety of a student or school employee, visitor or volunteer.
Parents may make other individualized requests for exceptions to this policy to the Administration.
Consequences for Violation
A student will receive one warning prior to discipline for violating this policy. On the second violation of this policy, the electronic device will be confiscated, labeled, and held in a secure location. The Administration, teachers, and other individuals designated by the Principal may confiscate electronic devices according to this policy.
An individual that finds or confiscates an electronic device may search the device for the purpose of determining the device’s owner. Electronic devices that are used inappropriately may be subject to search by the Principal only if there is a reasonable suspicion that the device has been used to cheat or to threaten, embarrass, harass, or intimidate other students, teachers, volunteers, School guests, or School employees.
The School is not responsible for loss, damage or theft of any electronic devices. The School will make reasonable efforts to notify parents/guardians that the School has a student’s electronic device in its possession. Parents/guardians who show identification may retrieve confiscated electronic devices during school hours or by appointment. The School will retain un-retrieved electronic devices until the end of the school year, at which time all personal data will be cleared from the devices before their disposal.
The Principal may impose other additional disciplinary consequences for a student’s violation of this policy as the Principal determines is reasonable under the circumstances, including the nature of the violation and other disciplinary actions in which the student has been involved. Such disciplinary actions may include:
- Disciplinary letter to the student’s parent/guardian that is placed in the student’s file
- In-school suspension
- Loss of the privilege of participating in school-sponsored activities or of receiving honor recognition
The School may contact law enforcement if circumstances warrant.
Notice of the Policy
The School will give parents and students written notice of this policy annually. Written notice may be satisfied by posting the policy on the School’s website, publishing the policy in a school handbook, sending the policy to the student’s home, or any other reasonable means.
Creative and Innovative Uses for Electronic Devices
Teachers and other School employees are encouraged to use electronic devices creatively in order to effectively communicate with students and parents/guardians and to enhance instruction. Creative uses might include notifying absent students of assignments, communicating with parents when students excel or if they are behind or absent, notifying students and parents of news articles or events that would enhance the learning experience, providing feedback to students on tests and assignments, parents notifying the School when students are absent or tardy.
Picture taking or sound or video recording by students is prohibited in school private areas such as locker rooms, counseling sessions, washrooms, and dressing areas.
Students bring electronic devices on school property at their own risk. The School is not responsible for lost, stolen or damaged electronic devices.
Students are responsible for their own electronic devices and may be jointly subject to discipline if their device is misused by another.