CAMDEN COUNTY, Mo. -- Despite rumors the school has implemented a device to cut off cellular phone signals in an attempt to limit their use, Camdenton School District officials say it is the concrete walls of the high school that act as a barrier.
Despite rumors the school has implemented a device to cut off cellular phone signals in an attempt to limit their use, Camdenton School District officials say it is the concrete walls of the high school that act as a barrier. The lack of a signal may have led parents and students to believe the technology was implemented, but school district Superintendent Maurice Overlander said no such tool exists. Even if it did, lake area schools ban the use of cell phones while in the building anyway. With a few exceptions, all lake area schools prohibit the use of phones during school hours. School officials say they are not typically confiscated unless they can be seen or heard. Across the lake area, school districts enforce different forms of cell phone and electronic device policies to limit distractions and interruptions so students can focus on academics. While most area schools allow cell phones to be brought in the building, they are to be turned off and put away. In Camdenton, school policy includes cell phones on a list of several items that are prohibited inside the buildings. “We have wrestled with that policy,” Overlander said. “Different people have different expectations and there are at times, very legitimate reasons kids need them, but there is a time and place.” Overlander said the school allows students to utilize phones in the office and parents are encouraged to leave messages with staff, he said. If a cell phone goes off or is being used, it will be confiscated and returned at the end of the day. The second violation will mean parents will have to come pick up the phone. “We just don’t want to see them,” Overlander said. “If they are out of sight, they are not being used.” While some schools are more stringent in their policies, others offer a more relaxed view. “We allow the students to bring cell phones with them, but they have to turn them off if they enter the building,” Macks Creek High School principal Donna Moffatt said. “We see a need for students to have them and we are small enough to control it,” she said. “When you have a student that is driving, as a parent, you want them to have a cell phone in case they have trouble.” The Versailles school district allows students to use cell phones as a last resort. When other landlines are occupied and it is an emergency, students are allowed to call parents from their cell phone in the school office, high school principal Mike Butt said. Lake Sun Leader Contact this reporter at email@example.com