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Cell phones banned in Louisiana public schools

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BATON ROUGE - Public schools are updating their policies in accordance with a new state law concerning students' cell phone usage in schools. 

Governor Jeff Landry signed the measure that bans students from having cell phones on their person. Sen. Beth Mizell, R-Franklinton, authored Senate Bill 207 which passed the Senate unanimously and passed 84 to 13 on the House floor. The law requires phones to be turned off and stowed away during the school day.

"No student shall possess, on his person, an electronic telecommunication device throughout the instructional day. If a student brings an electronic telecommunication device in any public elementary or secondary school building or on the grounds thereof during an instructional day, the electronic device shall either be turned off and properly stowed away for the duration of the instructional day or prohibited from being turned on and used during the instructional day."

Some parents in East Baton Rouge say the change is a no-brainer. One parent says students can easily be distracted in the classroom, and banning cell phones can prevent unnecessary interruptions.

"I want them to learn," the parent said. “I don't need my child to have a phone and be trying to text while he's supposed to be listening.”

In some school districts, handbooks have already been changed. On Friday, Iberville Parish Schools sent a notice reminding parents and staff that cell phones will not be allowed in any elementary or secondary building, on school grounds, or on school buses. 

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