Good evening, Panthers, this is East Duplin High School calling with a quick message concerning a change in one of our practices dealing with cell phones.  Beginning tomorrow, students will not be allowed to use cell phones during class time.  This does not mean that they cannot have their cell phones at school.  It only means that during class time, they are not allowed to have them.  For a long time, our school worked very hard in trying to make it to where our students could use their cell phones in class.  We knew that there were a lot of powerful uses for cell phones in the classroom and wanted very much for our students to have those opportunities.  However, now that all students have a wireless device, the need for cell phone usage at school has shifted.  In fact, the negative uses of cell phones now very much outweigh the positive uses.  We are seeing a rise in issues with cell phones.  Issues such as texting other students during class to meet up somewhere, use of social media at school to cyberbully other students, cheating on tests, and simply not paying attention in class because they are focused on their phones.  We feel that this is by far in the best interest for our students and just wanted to keep the home in the loop for why we’re doing what we’re doing.  If you have any questions concerning this new practice, please feel free to contact the school at any time.  As always, thank you for your continued support of our great school.