Parents love them but kids hate new lock-up pouches being used to stop students using their smartphones in class.
Parents love them but kids hate new lock-up pouches being used to stop students using their smartphones in class.

Schools locking up students’ mobile phones for the day

Parents love them but kids hate the new lock-up pouches being used at Western Sydney schools to stop students using their smartphones in class.

Each morning when students arrive at school they lock their phones into their own pouch and cannot unlock them until the end of the day, when they tap on unlocking magnet stations located throughout the school.

Kylie Gilhooly with her daughters, 15-year-old Abrianna and 14-year-old Isabelle. Picture: Jeremy Piper
Kylie Gilhooly with her daughters, 15-year-old Abrianna and 14-year-old Isabelle. Picture: Jeremy Piper

Schools to introduce the technology include Moorebank, Canley Vale and Fairvale high schools. Mum-of-five Kylie Gilhooly said the pouches were a great idea to keep her Moorebank High daughters Abrianna, 16, and Isabelle, 14, focused in class.

"I have been called by the teachers sometimes about (phone use) … It's just irresistible for them to take a peek at their phones," she said.

But Year 11 student Abrianna firmly disagrees.

"I think it'll be pretty annoying, especially queuing up at the end of the day to unlock my phone," she said.

Secondary Principals Council president Craig Petersen said the pouches would help prevent distractions and had been "highly effective" when trialled at regional schools in 2019.

But Central Coast Council of P&Cs president Sharryn Brownlee warned the pouches would encourage students to "be sneaky".

Originally published as Schools locking up students' mobile phones for the day


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