News > France

France

France outlaw smartphone use in schools

rfi English, Jul 31

Schoolchildren will have to leave their smartphones switched off or at home as the new academic year begins in September, after lawmakers voted for a ban on Monday.

The ban on smartphones, tablets and other connected devices, which will apply to pupils up to the age of 14-15, fulfils a campaign promise by centrist President Emmanuel Macron, while being derided as "cosmetic" by the opposition.

MPs of Macron's centrist LREM party and its allies gave final approval to the bill, while lawmakers on the left and right abstained from the vote, calling the law a "publicity stunt" that would change nothing.

Under the new law, schools may make exceptions for "pedagogical use", extra-curricular activities, or for disabled pupils.

Secondary schools for their part can decide individually whether to impose a partial or total ban on connected devices.

A previous law, passed in 2010, already prohibited smartphone use during class.

Education Minister Jean-Michel Blanquer said the earlier law did not apply across the board and lacked 'teeth', while the new law moves France "into the 21st century".

"It sends a message to French society" as well as countries around the world, he said.

Nearly nine in 10 French teens aged 12 to 17 own a smartphone.

 

Similar Stories

France

Truck driver strike on overtime pay cancelled

The planned strike by road transport truck drivers has been cancelled, with unions…

MidiLibre/Scoop, Dec 12

France

Strasbourg shooting attack identified as…

The suspect in the deadly shooting at a Christmas market in the city of Strasbourg…

rfi English, Dec 12

France

Macron under pressure from former PM to…

Former prime minister and mayor of Bordeaux, Alain Juppé, has called on President…

rfi English, Dec 9

France

1700 arrested, Paris takes stock of destruction

More than 1,700 people were arrested across France during the latest "yellow vest"…

rfi English, Dec 9