Skip to main content

8350 - Student Electronic Device Policy - Second Reading

  1. PURPOSE AND PHILOSOPHY
    Weber School District (hereinafter referred to as “WSD” and “District”) seeks to promote an environment conducive to teaching, learning, and protecting instructional time. WSD recognizes that electronic devices are valuable tools for instruction and communication.  Additionally, WSD recognizes that while electronic devices enhance education, they may become sources of disruption in the educational environment and may pose safety and privacy issues. WSD is committed to managing electronic device usage responsibly to safeguard instructional time and maintain a productive learning atmosphere.

  2. PROCEDURE
    In order to maintain an effective learning environment, and to promote safety and respect among students, WSD adopts this policy governing student use of electronic devices, as required by Utah School Board Rule 277-495. This policy shall act in conjunction with Policy 8311 Appropriate Use Policy for Computers and Network Resources and Policy 8320 - Student Appropriate Use.

  3. DEFINITIONS
    1. “Appropriate use policy” means a document stipulating constraints and practices that a user shall accept prior to a user accessing the District's, or any school within the District's, network or the internet. 
    2. “Electronic device” means a device that is used for audio, video, or text communication or any other type of computer or computer-like instrument including:
      1. a smartphone;
      2. a smart or electronic watch;
      3. a tablet;
      4. music or gaming device;
      5. headphones/earbuds/airpods; or 
      6. a virtual reality device. 
    3. “Guest” means an individual:
      1. who is not a student, employee, or designated volunteer of a public school; and 
      2. who is on school property or at the site of a school-sponsored activity or event. 
    4. “Inappropriate matter” means pornographic or indecent material as defined in Utah Code Ann. §76-10-1253(1)(a)
    5. “District-owned electronic device” means a device that is used for audio, video, text communication, or other type of computer or computer-like instrument that is identified as being owned, provided, issued, or lent by the District to a student or employee.
    6. “Policy” means an electronic device use policy as required by Utah School Board Rule 277-495 that contains: 
      1. permissible uses of an electronic device under certain circumstances; or
      2. restricted uses of electronic devices under certain circumstances.
    7. “Privately-owned electronic device” means a device, including an electronic device that is used for audio, video, text communication, or other type of computer or computer-like instrument that is not owned or issued by the District to a student, or employee. This includes, but is not limited to, cell phones, headphones/earbuds/airpods, and smartwatches.
    8. “School Hours” means when the first bell rings to begin instructional time at the start of the day until the last bell rings to end instructional time at the end of the day.
    9. “School personnel” means any adult employee, including substitutes, part-time paraprofessional, certified and classified employees.

  4. PROHIBITED USES AT SCHOOL AND SCHOOL-RELATED ACTIVITIES
    1. Students are prohibited from using privately-owned electronic devices during instructional time.  Students are expected to keep their privately-owned electronic devices out of sight and on silent mode during times of prohibited use. Headphones/earbuds/airpods are not allowed in ears during times of prohibited use. Smart watches may be worn but applications on the watch may not be used during times of prohibited use.
      1. Elementary students are prohibited from using privately-owned electronic devices during school hours. Elementary students are also discouraged from using privately-owned electronic devices before school once students are on school grounds.
      2. Secondary students are prohibited from using privately-owned electronic devices during class time, locker rooms, and in restrooms.
      3. Administrators may impose additional restrictions on privately-owned electronic devices with director approval.
    2. The following prohibited uses of electronic devices applies to all district-owned and privately-owned electronic devices that are on district property, at a district-sponsored event, and/or are connected to district networks or district systems: 
      1. Electronic devices are prohibited from being used in ways that:
        1. bully (including cyberbullying), humiliate, harass (including sexual harassment), or intimidate school-related individuals, including students, employees, and guests, consistent with Policy 4120 - Student Discrimination and Harassment; Policy 7100 - Personnel Harassment and Discrimination; and Policy 5201 - Bullying Policy;
        2. violate local, state, or federal laws, including but not limited to;
          1. attempting unauthorized access (e.g. hacking, altering, or bypassing network security).
          2. dissemination of personal student information under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) 34 CFR, Part 99.
        3. invade reasonable expectations of privacy of school-related individuals, including students, employees, and guests;
          1. Electronic devices with the capacity to record, stream, or otherwise transmit images or audio may not be used at any time in any school location where a reasonable expectation of personal privacy exists. These locations and circumstances include but are not limited to:
            1. locker rooms, shower facilities, restrooms, and any other areas where students or others may change clothes or be in any stage or degree of disrobing or changing clothes;
            2. private conversations and/or discussions between others not a party to the conversation and/or discussion; and
            3. at any time without the consent of the person/s being filmed.
        4. disrupt the educational environment and/or instructional time;
        5. conduct unethical activities, such as cheating on assignments/tests; and
      2. Students are prohibited from filming fights, assaults, or physical aggression (“altercation”) of any kind that occurs at school or a school-related event, even with consent from one of the persons involved in the altercation.
      3. Students are prohibited from accessing inappropriate content on the Internet and the world wide web while using district equipment, services, or connectivity whether on or off school property.
        1. The use of electronic devices to access or disseminate inappropriate matter on district-owned electronic devices or privately-owned electronic devices on school property, at school-sponsored events, or using school connectivity may have criminal, and/ or student disciplinary consequences, and if appropriate, may be reported to law enforcement.

  5. PERMITTED USES AT SCHOOL AND SCHOOL-RELATED ACTIVITIES 
    1. Elementary students may use privately-owned electronic devices after school hours.  
    2. Secondary students may use privately-owned electronic devices before and after school, during transition periods, and during lunch breaks.
    3. Students may use electronic devices despite restricted uses by a school when authorized pursuant to an Individualized Education Program (IEP), a Section 504 Plan, or a Health Care Plan. 
    4. The use of electronic devices may be prohibited by students during state and federally-mandated tests and assessments unless specifically allowed by law, an IEP, a Section 504 Accommodation Plan, a Health Care Plan, or testing/assessment instruction.
    5. Students will be instructed by teachers and/or administrators regarding permitted use of privately owned electronic devices during emergency situations.
    6. Teachers may request the single use of privately owned devices for instructional use with administrators' permission.
    7. Administrators at Weber Innovation Center may define instructional time for their students.

  6. STUDENT VIOLATIONS
    1. Violations for students who engage in prohibited conduct with electronic devices will result in more serious consequences than violations for students who access privately-owned electronic devices during instructional time. 
    2. Electronic devices used in violation of this policy may be confiscated by school personnel and returned to the student or parent/guardian at an appropriate time.
    3. Violations by accessing privately-owned devices during instructional time will result in the  following consequences: 
      1. First Violation: Redirect/reteach by classroom teacher and parent/guardian may be notified.
      2. Second Violation: Device will be confiscated by the teacher and/or administrator and kept until the end of class in a secure location. Parent/guardian will be notified by the teacher. 
      3. Third Violation: Confiscation of the electronic device to the school administration and/or main office staff. The electronic device shall remain in the possession of the school administration or office staff until the end of the school day. The administrator/office staff may notify the parent/guardian of the student's violation.
      4. Fourth violation: Confiscation of the electronic device to the school administration and/or main office staff. The electronic device shall remain in the possession of the school administration or office staff until picked up by the parent/guardian. The administrator/office staff shall notify the parent/guardian of the student's violation.
      5. Subsequent Violations: Students who are repeat offenders of this policy shall be subject to the imposition of any appropriate disciplinary action, which may include suspension. 
      6. Students and/or parents/guardians, as applicable, are expected to claim a confiscated electronic device within ten (10) business days of the date it was relinquished.  The administration is not liable (per Section VII of this policy), financially or otherwise, for any unclaimed electronic device after this time period.
      7. Students who refuse to allow their electronic devices to be confiscated for violations may be disciplined for insubordination. Teachers who are unable to confiscate a phone will contact administration.
    4. Violations of section IV.B. will result in disciplinary action in accordance with Policy 5200, Policy 5201, Policy 4120, and Policy 4121, and may be referred to law enforcement if the conduct involves criminal activity.

  7. SEARCHES 
    1. With respect to a student’s use of an electronic device on school property, students have no expectation of privacy or confidentiality.
    2. Notwithstanding Section V.A. of this policy, browsing the content of a student’s privately owned electronic device is considered a search and shall be conducted consistent with Policy 5300 - School Search and Seizure. Mere presence of the device, even in violation of a class or school rule, is insufficient to justify looking through the device’s content unless reasonable suspicion exists that the content itself will reveal violation of law or policy.

  8. RISK OF LOSS
    1. Student’s privately-owned devices are susceptible to loss, theft, and damage. 
    2. The District is not responsible for the security or safekeeping of personal electronic devices and is not financially responsible for their loss, theft, and/or damage. 
    3. Students who bring electronic devices to school do so at their own risk.

  9. DISSEMINATION OF POLICY 
    1. This policy shall be posted on the District’s website. This policy, or a summary thereof, may also be published in parent information guides, student handbooks, student registration materials, and/or other appropriate school publications as directed by the District.

Policy Feedback:

Your input is crucial in shaping our school district's policies - please share
your feedback on pending policies under review by the board.

Send Feedback