Memphis City Schools to change cell phone policy - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Memphis City Schools to change cell phone policy

By Nick Kenney - bio | email | Follow us on Twitter

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC-TV) - Memphis City Schools will change it's cell phone policy, the result of public hang-ups after a Commercial Appeal investigation uncovered mis-use.

During the 2007-2008 school year, MCS issued more than 1,200 cell phones and other mobile devices. The bill: more than $600,000.

Some of the charges included ring tones, screen savers and even sex chats.

Now, Memphis City Schools will collect all work-issued mobile devices.  Superintendent Dr. Kriner Cash and the Information Technology Department will decide which employees actually need a cell phone.  Then, the phones will be re-issued only to those employees deemed necessary.

Tuesday, a MCS spokesperson said the number of mobile devices issued will be far fewer.  Each employee issued a cell phone must sign a new user-agreement.  Repercussions for mis-use will include personally paying the bill, possible job suspension, even potential job termination.

"Within the next few weeks, MCS will present the new policy to the school board for approval.

Reached for comment, school board member Kenneth Whalum said the policy is "not a bad idea," adding, "once we establish clear policy direction I think it'll be okay."

School Board president Tomeka Hart said, "I'm for whatever will help us become more efficient and better managed."

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