New UK Mandate: Mobile Phones to be Prohibited in Schools

In an upcoming declaration by Education Secretary Gillian Keegan, mobile phones are to be prohibited in schools during class hours and breaks, addressing concerns from teachers and parents alike.

Quick Facts

  • Directive Details: Gillian Keegan will instruct schools to forbid the use of mobile phones not just during class, but also during breaks.
  • Reasons Behind the Ban: Mobile phones have been linked to distractions, behavioral disruptions, and instances of bullying within school premises.
  • Precedent Actions: While some schools have already initiated a ban, others have allowed phone usage especially during breaks, despite growing concerns.

The forthcoming edict stems from the growing evidence of the detrimental effects mobile phones have in the classroom environment. They’ve been identified not only as a major source of distraction for students but also as a tool for bullying. With the ever-present notifications from various apps, attention spans are further diminished, thereby hampering the academic process.

Interestingly, this isn’t a unique stance. In June, Finland had also prohibited phones in classrooms, attributing the move to a dip in examination performances. Further solidifying this perspective, the United Nations in the subsequent month had advised that smartphones be banned in an effort to bolster learning and curb classroom disturbances and online bullying.

The UN’s education, science, and culture agency, Unesco, highlighted the negative correlation between excessive mobile phone use and academic performance. Audrey Azoulay, Unesco’s director general, emphasized that while the ‘digital revolution’ has its merits in the education sector, its usage needs monitoring and regulations to ensure it benefits both students and teachers.

For Further Reading
Mobile Phone Usage and Academic Performance: Numerous studies have shown a correlation between excessive mobile phone usage and a decline in academic performance. The constant notifications and access to the internet can divert a student’s attention, leading to decreased concentration and retention. Mobile phones, while being a tool for communication and knowledge, can be counterproductive if not used responsibly in an academic setting. Read more on Wikipedia.


Q: Why is there a need to ban mobile phones in schools?
A: Mobile phones have been identified as a major source of distraction for students, reducing their attention span and hampering the academic process. They are also associated with behavioral disruptions and instances of bullying within school premises.

Q: Have other countries taken similar measures?
A: Yes, countries like Finland have already instituted such bans, especially after noticing a decline in examination performances linked to mobile phone usage.

Q: What does the UN say about mobile phone usage in schools?
A: The United Nations, particularly through its agency Unesco, has advised against smartphone usage in schools to bolster learning and reduce classroom disturbances and online bullying.

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