Mobile Phones Policy.

The safeguarding of pupils at Southgate School is paramount. Mobile phones (and other portable devices) are susceptible to misuse, and can be used to access and distribute indecent content. They are also responsible for cyber bullying and the exploitation of vulnerable young people. Along with the disruptions and distractions they cause, Southgate School discourage pupils from bringing mobile phones and portable media devices to school. In this policy, the term mobile phone is used to cover all portable devices.

Pupils:

    • In the rare event a mobile phone is required to be brought into school, pupils will hand the phone over to a member of group staff as soon as they enter the school. The phone must be switched off and will be locked away in a cupboard until the end of the day.
    • Pupils in possession of mobile phones during the day will not receive any reward points or merits until the phone is handed over.
    • If the phone is being used inappropriately (e.g. taking photos and videos), it may be removed from the pupil for an indefinite period. In some circumstances, the pupil(s) may be referred to the police.
    • Pupils are not allowed to have mobile phones on school trips or residentials.
    • If parents/ carers need to contact their children urgently, they should phone the school office and a message can be relayed promptly.

Staff:

    • Staff are not permitted to make/ receive calls/ texts during contact time with children. Phones will be switched off and out of sight.
    • Staff will not use mobile phones for personal reasons in any spaces where pupils are present.
    • We advise staff to securely protect access to functions of their phone.
    • In exceptional circumstances (e.g. sick relative), staff may keep their phone on them to receive emergency calls. In such cases, permission must be granted from the headteacher.
    • Staff are not permitted to take recordings or photos of pupils unless using school equipment.
    • Personal mobiles are not to be used for work related purposes unless there is a specific agreement with the headteacher. The school has its own mobiles for such purposes.

Visitors, Volunteers, Governors and Contractors:

    • All visitors, volunteers, governors and contractors are expected to follow our mobile phone policy as it relates to staff while they are on the premises.
    • Such visitors will be informed of our expectations regarding mobile phones when deemed necessary.

Parents/ Carers:

    • While we would prefer parents not to use their phones while at Southgate School, we recognise the difficulties in regulating this. We therefore ask that their usage of mobile phones is courteous and appropriate to a school environment.
    • Parents/ carers are welcome to photograph or video school events. We insist that these images/ videos are not published (e.g. Facebook etc.) if they include any children who are not their own.