New plan to ban cell phones in ALL NSW public schools

Mobile phones will be banned in all public schools if Labor wins the upcoming state election in response to a spate of incidents involving students on social media.

Chris Minns, leader of the NSW Labor Party, said he would impose the mobile phone ban in schools if elected, saying it was the “biggest problem” facing young people.

The announcement comes after several Knox High School students were expelled for sharing racist and misogynist content via an online chat room.

“It’s almost impossible for the average teacher to figure out whether a student is trying to solve a complicated problem or is watching a TikTok video in the middle of a lesson,” he told Ben Fordham.

Mobile phones will be banned in all NSW public schools as Labor wins the upcoming state election in response to a spate of incidents involving pupils on social media

Mobile phones will be banned in all NSW public schools as Labor wins the upcoming state election in response to a spate of incidents involving pupils on social media

In NSW, mobile phones are banned in primary schools, with secondary schools at their discretion to prevent children from using devices on school premises.

Western Australia, South Australia and Victoria have all banned phones in public high schools, with Mr Minns promising to give NSW teachers equal authority.

“Right now you can pull out your phone in the middle of class and say it’s for educational purposes. They can understand from the teacher’s point of view that they cannot see whether that is true or not,” the Labor leader told the 2GB presenter.

“We leave it up to the schools whether they collect all phones at the beginning of the day or set a blanket rule where you can’t take it out during a lesson.”

Tablets and iPads will still be allowed to be used in class, with Mr Minns hoping there are technical ways to ensure the right is not abused.

He said decision-making needs to be taken out of the hands of students who don’t have the “maturity” to show restraint.

“I don’t think young people have the maturity to make a decision when deciding the educational issue at hand or using TikTok,” he said.

“Getting kids off social media to the parks or into organized sports is by far the biggest problem in our house.”

Western Australia, South Australia and Victoria have all banned phones in public high schools - with Mr Minns vowing to give NSW teachers equal authority

Western Australia, South Australia and Victoria have all banned phones in public high schools – with Mr Minns vowing to give NSW teachers equal authority

Mr Minns also accused tech companies of using the world’s youth as “guinea pigs” and said proper legislation must be implemented to protect them.

Last week, a number of Knox students were expelled from school for using an encrypted app to share “racist, misogynistic and homophobic” content they were assured would never be discovered by their teachers.

Users in the chat room, hosted by messaging service Discord, sent the vile messages using aliases such as “n*****removalservice” and “Fa**othather3000”.

“I hate women, I hate gays, Jews, people who don’t play Fortnite, furries, n*****s, I love boobs, foot abortions, rape, drugs,” was one of the disturbing messages.

Parents are spending up to $35,000 to send their children to the facility on Sydney’s north shore but “are now trying to settle into other schools,” a Knox spokesperson told Daily Mail Australia.

Teens at Knox Grammar, a private boys' school on Sydney's North Shore, used an encrypted app to post

Teens at Knox Grammar, a private boys’ school on Sydney’s North Shore, used an encrypted app to post “racist, misogynistic and homophobic” content

The messages received by the Daily Telegraph contain a mixture of sexist, racist and anti-Semitic sentiments, coupled with several extreme anti-abortion statements.

“Hitler will always be in my heart. Heil Hitler,” read one message.

“Stupid ‘pro’ decisions think women’s rights matter…I just hate kids and wish they die take them out at source,” wrote a second.

“I’m an insane potential pedophile who rapes babies for a living,” said a third, while another questioned why they hadn’t been invited to a “rape party”.

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Knox Grammar has suspended several students for their participation in the group and launched an internal investigation (pictured a mockup of Discord messages).

Knox Grammar has suspended several students for their participation in the group and launched an internal investigation (pictured a mockup of Discord messages).

Shocking videos of young men who appear to have been brutally raped or assaulted were also shared in the group chat, which is believed to have started about two years ago.

One student in the chat said “Gang Gang Lore” would prevent members from snooping with one another, assuring that teachers were not authorized to “scan your device for non-school-related matters.”

Psychologist Tim Watson-Munro called the content “deeply disturbing” and said the chat room exuded “the feel of a club or even a cult”.

“What’s very disturbing is that there seems to be some sort of organization in the way they communicate,” he told the Daily Telegraph.

Mr Watson-Munro said there was a risk that an “out of joint” group member would play out some of the sadistic utterances in his daily life.

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The messages are a mixture of sexist, racist and anti-Semitic sentiments, coupled with several extreme anti-abortion statements (pictured a mockup of the Discord messages).

The messages are a mixture of sexist, racist and anti-Semitic sentiments, coupled with several extreme anti-abortion statements (pictured a mockup of the Discord messages).

In a letter sent to parents’ homes on Wednesday, Knox principal Scott James said the students involved had “posted inappropriate messages and engaged in offensive comments in private chat rooms”.

“The nature of these posts is contrary to Knox’s values ​​and culture and is unacceptable,” the letter said.

“The actions of these boys do not reflect a Knox upbringing nor the expectations we place on our students to be respectful and responsible citizens in the community.”

Mr James said there had been a “range of consequences” for the students involved who had been penalized for their participation in the chat room, from “suspension to students dropping out of school”.

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-11179701/New-plan-ban-mobile-phones-public-schools-New-South-Wales.html?ns_mchannel=rss&ns_campaign=1490&ito=1490 New plan to ban cell phones in ALL NSW public schools

Bradford Betz

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