The Kewaskum School District is implementing a new policy that does not allow Kewaskum High School students to use their cell phones during the school day.
The district is now asking the Kewaskum Police Department to help enforce the new policy. At the Village Board meeting on Monday, Aug. 6, the village trustees discussed a proposed ordinance that would allow the police department to give citations to students who do not follow the school’s cell phone/electronic communication devices policy.
Kewaskum High School Associate Principal Mark Bingham told the board that students will be allowed to bring cell phones to the school, but they must keep them in their lockers during class time.
A first offense would result in a 30-minute lunch detention, and a second offense would give a student two 30- minute lunch detentions. If a third offense would occur, the school district is requesting that the case be referred to the Kewaskum Police Department, according to Bingham.
Each student will have access to a Chromebook, so cell phones will not be needed classrooms, Bingham told village trustees. “It has become a distraction, and first and foremost, safety is our concern, and with social media concerns nowadays, having that cell phone readily available during the school day has really caused some problems during the school day,” Bingham said.
Bingham said there have been problems with pictures being taken and being sent through social media. “We truly want to eliminate that concern during the school day,” Bingham said.
Germantown has a similary policy that Municipal Court Judge Steve Cain prosecutes, Kewaskum Police Lt. Mark Steiner told the Village Board Monday night. “It is our hope that we don’t have to take it to take it to this level,” Bingham said.
Village Trustee Dave Spenner said he is concerned with this as a school problem, but is not sure that it is something that police department should enforce. “I’m not real comfortable with this policy,” Spenner said. Kewaskum Middle School already has a no cell phone policy in place. The Village Board is expected to discuss the ordinance ant its next meeting.