Are teachers allowed to use mobile phones in class?

(99 Posts)
hulahoopsilove Wed 29-Jan-14 18:25:14

Ds just said the teacher yr4 got her mobile out and was taking pictures of his work...artwork.

I thought mobiles were banned surely to safe guard children.

Senior school portrait lessons certainly used phones. Much easier than keeping still.

ravenAK Thu 30-Jan-14 00:32:33

I have texts beeping through every so often. I also have a zombie alarm from the Xmas hols that goes off in my bag at 11.30 every day & which has become a running joke with all 4 of the classes I teach at that time on different days.

They'd be terribly disappointed if I cancelled it!

I'd never reply to a text or answer a call whilst teaching though - we have a specific clause in our staff IT policy prohibiting this, which is largely uncontroversial - the Head had far more resistance when he tried to ban the use of Facebook/twitter by staff, on phones, during the lunch hour...

Euphemia Thu 30-Jan-14 06:30:58

My phone is in the staffroom most of the time as it makes my IWB speakers buzz. hmm

I've only ever kept it in class for calls when I was on supply, as DD's school had that number in case of illness, etc.

MiaowTheCat Thu 30-Jan-14 08:21:10

When I was on supply I kept mine with me on silent or vibrate in my pocket. Think I had one occasion where I had it out on the desk, having OKed it with the head, because that classroom had no clock visible from the teacher's chair for carpet time and my watch battery had gone kaput (as always, at the start of a week so I couldn't get it fixed till the weekend!) and I needed some way of checking I was keeping to time in the lesson input part of the session! It's been used occasionally as well for those lessons where you need stopwatches to time small group stuff and the batteries on all the buggers are knackered (again) - in that case I think I had one group using the whiteboard timer, one group using my phone (I trusted them... and I'd set it to airplane mode without telling 'em anyway!), and one group using my iPod or something like that!

More than anything else if you get your phone out in a KS2 class you usually get mercilessly critiqued by the kids for how ancient a model it is!

wholesomemum Thu 30-Jan-14 08:34:29

Look I'm a former teacher and you should all realise that there are new policies where teachers create portfolios of children's work for their careers. They are actively encouraged to do so in order for there to be tangible evidence of the outcomes of their teaching. Secondly many schools encourage it too, as they like to have records and resources for displays not to mention the all-important websites. It is a parent's right to request that no image of their child be made or disseminated by a school without their permission. Every school has a form for this and keeps a record which legally all staff are obliged to refer to. However, it is inevitable that in cases where this request has not been made that one or several teachers in a school will probably have pictures of your kid on their laptops. Not because they're perverts but because they are hardworking professionals who are rushed off their fleets and probably thought it would be nice for the kids and parents if there we as a display in the entrance Hall of their classes trip to the zoo or of the school play. This has always gone on. They are the adult. They have been CRB checked. Lighten up or start homeschooling. Jeez!!

wholesomemum Thu 30-Jan-14 08:39:07

Also...one more thing on the phones-cameras continuum...technology is advancing so fast that we everyone will soon have a device that does everything...great pics, videos, calls, emails...in theory most of us already do. Phones are not what make children vulnerable...not if wielded by adults who are qualified and repeatedly screened. I'm sorry but it makes me sad that so many parents refuse to invest any trust in teachers anymore. It makes their lives hell at times, to be frank. And if in doubt, what's so difficult about a frank but reasonable conversation with teacher? Honestly!

indyandlara Thu 30-Jan-14 09:26:03

I have mine out and regularly update FB, criticising the kids in the room...

indyandlara Thu 30-Jan-14 09:27:15

Or maybe mine is out as I use it to play music to accompany some activities, connect to the IWB to project some apps and use the clock when my wall clock has no batteries.

hulahoopsilove Thu 30-Jan-14 11:34:05

Still feel most parents would be shocked if they knew. Spoke to my friend who is a nursery manager and she was shocked. All her stack have to leave them in their lockers

brettgirl2 Thu 30-Jan-14 13:22:31

ironic isn't it? In 3 years time when your dc is in secondary you'll be on about how they need a phone for 'safety'.

If a teacher is a peadophile then banning their mobile phone is hardly going to be a big deterrent. In fact perhaps it would make them easier to catch.

ShadowOfTheDay Thu 30-Jan-14 13:54:08

I'm a parent.... I'm not shocked....

Would you like the teachers who take the kids out to the park to not have a mobile phone with them, how about when they do forest school way down the back of the playing field.... my goodness they could take pics of the kids .... or ring for help when the epileptic child has a fit, or a careless one got a stick in his eye..... if it is ok in those situations, then it is ok in a classroom..

vestandknickers Thu 30-Jan-14 18:26:58

I'm a parent. Why would I be shocked that a teacher had a phone - or even checked it occasionally in class time?

brockenpurpleheart Thu 30-Jan-14 18:31:47

I have my phone on my desk. On silent. I do this since DS had an accident at his school, my mobile was in my bag, his school left a message with reception at my school and the receptionist didn't think to get it sent to me, despite it saying urgent, it was on the notice board and I had three hours of teaching before I went down there. Luckily I checked my phone between lessons which I don't normally do. Had to leave and get DS in hospital ...

clam Thu 30-Jan-14 18:33:38

I think you're over-reacting.

Bloodyteenagers Thu 30-Jan-14 18:43:38

Our policy, which is bog standard as issued by the council, is phones are not allowed in certain areas of the school. THey are allowed in classrooms, and can be used to take pictures. However, everything has to be deleted at the end of the day.

Not sure really what the issue is. Educators need to take evidence of work. This cannot always be the actual work but video/pictures of the work, which is then added to the database. To do this, you need access to a camera. Not all classes have cameras. Not all classes have an ipod, and so at times educators have to use their own devices, sometimes phones and sometimes their own cameras.

goingmadinthecountry Thu 30-Jan-14 22:13:10

I'd never use my mobile for pictures in class. I use a school camera or a school tablet. Would never dream of using my own phone. There's enough technology to use in school. Absolutely no need for phone.

I'd use my phone in an emergency but leave it switched off during lessons. Switch it on if I'm off site (swimming etc) but would never use it for personal calls.

hulahoopsilove Thu 30-Jan-14 23:35:27

If work needs to be documented schools should provide cameras

magnumicelolly Fri 31-Jan-14 00:22:14

Ha ha ha maybe they should... but in reality, many don't have a camera for every class, and if they do, they are often old, clunky and run on AA batteries that run out every 5 minutes. Where do you suggest they magic up the money for sets of new cameras at £60 or so a pop for ones with integral batteries?

I'm not sure I see your problem anyway. Surely any photo the staff take on their mobile could be taken on a school camera and vice versa, then used in exactly the same way? If the class teacher you are talking about was determined to take and use 'dodgy' photos, why would this be any easier on a camera phone than a school camera?

You comment on nurseries- but surely these are very different in that many children in them cannot communicate what has gone on as clearly as school age children?

curlew Fri 31-Jan-14 00:30:22

Not quite sure what I'm supposed to be shocked about- could you tell me please?(

Jinsei Fri 31-Jan-14 00:59:13

My dd's teacher has her phone in the classroom. I know this because her beloved teacher from last year, who is now at another school, sends text messages to the entire class through the current teacher's phone. grin The kids all think this is marvellous, and I think it's really sweet that she makes the effort to keep in touch.

It's possible that dd's teacher checks other messages from time to time, but I can't really get upset about it. Thing is, I trust the teacher to do a good job, because she is extremely conscientious and she cares about what she does. Whether or not she reads the odd text in the classroom makes no odds to me at all, as I know that my dd is safe, happy and making fantastic progress.

adoptmama Fri 31-Jan-14 04:06:02

I doubt she is 'always texting and making calls' regardless of what is said. Just another example of teaching bashing. Poor woman tries to capture an image of a nice piece of work by your child and this is your reaction. I frequently film and photograph children performing/acting in my lessons on my own ipad because the school doesn't have this available. Children love to see the films played back in class. Funnily enough I don't then store them (I like the memory on my device for my own apps and filming my own kids) nor do I use them for evil purposes. That is because I am a professional. DDs school puts photos in their reports, which I love, and we get a dvd of photos at the end of the year. Lovely memories. Why the hell would any normal parent object to their child being photographed in class or a photo being made of their work? Do we really live in such a frightened society that parents genuinely suspect the teachers are predators or will expose their children to danger?

There is a very disturbing trend of threads on here where parents seek to turn every thing a teacher does into a reason to criticise. The overwheming majority of teachers are hugely professional and hugely hard working. Taking photos of work in class is not unprofessional. It is not a reason to be shocked. It should not be a reason to further quiz a young child in the hopes of finding 'evidence' that the teacher answered a call in class. Maybe a child was sick, maybe a relative was dying, maybe she was taking a call from a parent - all reasons I have answered my phone during a lesson. Luckily the children I teach are a lot more understanding of this that some posters on here.

fanjolina Fri 31-Jan-14 05:03:12

Bloody hell, the professionally offended never cease to amaze me.

And this attitude about schools should provide cameras - there's no money to do so!

Get a grip.

Euphemia Fri 31-Jan-14 06:51:52

Can I also tell you that we preach healthy eating to the children, then eat biscuits and CAKES in the staffroom?! Get us! shock

curlew Fri 31-Jan-14 06:58:00

Euphemia- you don't enforce uniform while not wearing one yourself, do you??????

OddBoots Fri 31-Jan-14 06:59:33

I have no problem with teachers having mobiles but I think the question has come about as most non-school early years settings have banned staff from having mobile phones on them at work in response to the Nottingham thing.

Teachers are trusted much more than early years practitioners.

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