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September 26, 2005

Hello! Ban lifted

By Molly Horan

Finally, students can carry cell phones in Bristol schools without breaking the rules.

Until this year, cell phones and beepers weren’t allowed in the city’s schools because they were considered drug paraphernalia, according to Superintendent Michael Wasta.

Many students carried them anyway.

This year, a new policy shows that school board members believe times have changed.

Before school started this fall, the Bristol Board of Education created a new policy that allows students to carry cell phones with them during the day as long as they’re used only before and after school, according to Wasta.

But with this new freedom come harsher punishments for students who take their phones out during class.

Teachers at Bristol Eastern High School told students during the first week that they could confiscate phones if they see them. But even when they hear a ringing phone during class, some teachers just glare. Others tell the student to turn the phone off, but don’t take it away.

School officials told students at the onset of the year that phones should be turned off, and not visible.

Wasta says reaction to the new rules from both students and parents has been positive.

“Parents want to be able to reach their children after school to work out rides or find out about changes in after school plans,” Wasta said.

Amber Brown, a junior at Bristol Eastern High School, said she believes the new policy is fair.

“Students are in school to learn, but sometimes cell phones are a necessity,” Brown said.

The Tattoo's Insider's Guide to High School


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