YAKIMA, Wash.-- Constantly checking, texting or even streaming a movie; students at Eisenhower High School, like most students at any high school across the country are addicted to their cellphones.
"I lose track of time, I don't even know what time of the day it is," says junior Iyisha Waiters.
"Like a pacifier and to separate-- if you've ever tried to separate a baby form their blanket or take a pacifier out of a kid's mouth, they're very territorial about it," says American sign language teacher, Lori Benoit. "So it was a continuing problem."
However, the problem seems to be getting better after the Yakima School District implemented a new cell phone policy.
"They can bring them to the building and use them before the first bell, they can use them during lunch at the high schools and they can use them after school," says Eisenhower High School principal, Jewel Brumley.
But as of this year, during class time all electronic devices are to be turned off.
At the high schools, students are only allowed to use them during class time if a teacher wants to use the smart phones as an instructional tool.
"This is really a big benefit for students and teachers because now it's one set rule, everybody knows it and it's easy to follow," says Brumley.
There are no stated punishments, but students caught using their phones more than once could end up losing them for the day. If problems persist parents/guardians will receive a phone call.
Brumley says the new policy should be a simple one to follow. "I think that's enough, we did all those years before without cell phones, now we can go back to just not using them during class time."
According to teachers the new policy is already showing positive results among students. And they are optimistic that as the school year progresses it will give them the opportunity to reach their full potential.
"That's probably the thing I appreciate the most, is that everybody is looking at me," says Benoit. "And I think we are going to see a tremendous amount of improved learning."
Smart phones are completely banned at middle school and elementary level-- they are only allowed if they are approved by an administrator and in emergency cases.
New cell phone policy at Yakima schools is helping students focus
The Yakima School District has implemented a new cell phone policy this school year. Teachers say the new rules are already making a difference in the classrooms.