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Parent Letter Regarding Cell Phone Lockers Usage

Please read.

Dear Parents and Guardians of Wells Students,

I want to reach out directly to families to describe a policy change at our school, so please take a few minutes to read this letter in its entirety.

In the recent past, Wells has permitted students to have their cell phones with them during the school day as long as they followed teachers’ directions. If a teacher requested a phone be put away, students were expected to comply, but there were also times when teachers permitted them to be used. The enactment of that policy, however, became increasingly complicated as other issues surfaced. The issues listed below occur in every school that permits students to use their own communicative devices, so please don’t think they are unique to us.

  1. Unauthorized use of phones during class

  2. Unauthorized video and audio recordings of students and staff in the building

  3. Theft or loss of cell phones during the school day

  4. Damage to phones or chargers that causes disruptions

  5. Social media has caused disruptions and inflamed emotions

Because of these issues and the associated loss of learning time, students will only be permitted to have and use electronic devices owned by Wells Community Academy while on the CPS network. Students will put their electronic devices into a small locker prior to going through security in the morning and pick them up when school ends. The lockers will be available free of charge to students if they and their guardians sign a form acknowledging that they understand the rules. This form will be distributed one week before the new policy takes effect.

Your children will still have access to the internet. We have over 400 computers and Chromebooks at Wells, and teachers can easily provide access. Your children can still bring cell phones and devices to school if they are locked in the lockers at the entrance. If they need them before or after school activities, they will have them. And, your children can call you using the CPS phones in the various offices. The main change will be that your students will be accessing the internet and reaching you while using CPS devices. That’s it.

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The Wells teachers and Wells Local School Council unanimously support this policy change. It is similar to the policy at many other CPS schools and is almost exactly the same as the recent Wells policy. We do expect that parents and guardians will have questions, and we’re here to answer them. I would invite you to email me at msstosek@cps.edu, call me at 773.534.7010, ormeet with me in person. Please call ahead so that I will be available. Thank you!

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Sincerely,

Mike Stosek
Principal
Wells Community Academy