The Osaka prefectural government has decided to allow public elementary and junior high school students to bring mobile phones with them to school, beginning this April.
The decision comes after the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology said Tuesday it was reviewing its policy that bans elementary and junior school students from bringing smartphones to school, Fuji TV reported. The policy dates back to 2009 when the ministry set a guideline that bringing smartphones to school should be prohibited in general because they could be disruptive to educational activities.
However, following an earthquake in June of last year, parents complained that they were unable to contact their children to confirm their safety.
Education Minister Masahiko Shibayama said the ministry will consider adjusting its policy to adapt to changes in the social environment and situations surrounding young students. He said students will be required to keep the phones in their bags during classes.© Japan Today