Alvin ISD bans smart watches and earbuds on school campuses

The Alvin Skate Park is 17-year-old Malakai Deford’s happy place.

“It’s a way for me to escape from things I have to deal with,” Deford said.

Where he can roll back into reality because he says during the previous school year, it felt more like a virtual experience.

“Everyone is on their phones,” he explained. “They don’t care what the teachers have to say, that’s not how it’s supposed to be.”

The Alvin Independent School District seems to agree.

The school district has decided to make a change to its technology policy, banning the use of earbuds and smartwatches.

Smartphones will still be allowed on campus.

“We looked at a variety of issues,’” Alvin ISD Assistant Superintendent Bobby Martinez said. “Mental health is obviously something we are concerned with, distractibility, sleep deprivation with the reliance on technology.”

“To be honest, I think it’s stupid because if they can have a phone they can have a smartwatch,” Danielle Krug said.

Krug says her son wearing a smartwatch gives her piece of mind. He’s going into the second grade, and she uses it to track his location.

“He’s not at the age where he has a phone, so the watch is the only thing I have to communicate with him,” she said.

However, Martinez says their focus is on their secondary schools.

“Primarily, we are looking at the smartwatches where the students can access their text messaging or their social media applications,” he said.

We asked Martinez why they were still allowing smartphones.

“We understand several families rely on smartphones for communication for safety purposes,” he said.

Martinez says they are still reviewing how they will enforce the policy on elementary school campuses.

“We feel like this is a step in the right direction,” he said.

Martinez says earbuds will be allowed only for approved instructional purposes.

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