Will Queensland follow suit in banning phones in schools?
QUEENSLAND will not follow Victoria's lead in banning mobile phones at all state schools - it has been confirmed.
Education Minister Grace Grace today rejected speculation the measure would be rolled out in Queensland saying that decision should be made by leaders within each school.
It comes as the Victorian Department of Education and Training today announced a blanket ban on mobile phones at all state schools from next year.
Exemptions would only be given for children who use devices to monitor health conditions or if a phone is required by the teacher for an activity.
Victorian education minister James Merlino told The Herald Sun the ban would tackle cyber bullying and improve learning outcomes.
"This will remove a major distraction from our classrooms, so that teachers can teach, and students can learn in a more focused, positive and supported environment," Mr Merlino said.
"Half of all young people have experienced cyber-bullying. By banning mobiles we can stop it at the school gate."
Victorian principals will work with the Department next term to create resources and advice before the ban falls in to place.
There will also be discussions to work out where to store phones for children without a locker, particularly in primary schools.
In Queensland, the Department of Education currently has guidelines for schools regarding acceptable use of mobile phones.
However, it is up to the individual principals to enforce the rules on mobile phone usage.
Ms Grace said the state government supported leaving the decision of mobile phone use to principals.
It comes from a recommendation at last year's Queensland Anti-Cyberbullying Taskforce.
"It recommended that schools should continue to have autonomy to determine student access to mobile phones and other personal devices at school," Ms Grace said.
"The government accepted that recommendation.
"The government supports principals in the establishment of appropriate protocols around mobile phone use in collaboration with their school community."