my daughter is in year 7, and nearly all of the kids have got a cheap phone. Not all of them look like bricks, hers looks like a blackberry but is a t-mobile branded phone. It's on a cheap contract as there was a deal on and I managed to knock them down a little as well, it's round about £7.00 per month. She's got 300 minutes and 5000 texts. The texts are excessive lol, but were meant to be 500 but were added on as a freebie.
You should be able to cap usage on the phone so that your child doesn't go over their allowance.
I never thought i'd say this... but plan to get a phone for my oldest starting secondary in sept. We won't be doing iphone or similar, but what is acceptable for yr 7 kids - do they usually have old leftover brick phone or do parents tend to splash out on something better? Is a basic smartfone a must? We are pretty skint these days so it'll need to be a cheap option. Contract or payg? Safety/being able to contact is (my) main reason for agreeing to it - but if payg is there a danger that when you need to contact the credit's run out? But am i right thinking even cheap contract can unintentionally run up big bills?