Rwanda government outlaws the use of cell phones in schools.

Article in The New Times, Rwanda’s Leading Daily newspaper

Elisée Mpirwa

Pupils in class at Rusheshe Primary School in Masaka, Kicukiro District. File

The Ministry of Education says that no more primary and secondary schools students will be allowed to own or use a mobile telephone at school, citing distraction.

The measure was announced Thursday in a post-cabinet press conference held at the Prime Minister’s office in Kimihurura, that discussed the need for improvement in the use of ICT devices in primary and secondary schools putting emphasis on banning cell phones and developing mechanisms to ensure compliance.

Education minister Dr Eugène Mutimura noted that students should only concentrate on their education and observe discipline while in school.

“Mobile telephones distract students and can tempt them into lead them to various consequences,” said Mutimura during the press briefing.

He added that a study conducted by the ministry revealed that when students use phones at school, it affects their studies as they spend most of their time on them and forget about their core duty of studying.

Gender and Family Promotion minister, Espérance Nyirasafari told reporters in the press conference that parents should support this decision as it will benefit their children.

“How can a student follow classes while chatting on social media, share photos and everything else?” wondered Nyirasafari.

The education ministry says that it is about to release guidelines that parents, teachers and students should follow in the use of mobile phones in schools.

Schools were called upon to buy common telephones for students who want to talk their parents.

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