97% of 11- to 17-year-olds use their smartphones during the school day.
The study by Common Sense Media reveals that daily in-school screen time ranges from less than a minute to 6 1/2 hours. The most common uses during school hours are social media (32%), YouTube (26%), and gaming (17%). TikTok stands out as the most popular social media app, with half of participants using it for an average of one hour and 52 minutes per day. However, TikTok has faced bans in some states over concerns about its impact on students’ mental health and data privacy.
The study also found that school phone policies varied widely among the adolescents interviewed. Some high schools had a total ban on smartphones, with detentions for unauthorized use. Others had more flexible policies, including class-specific rules where teachers encouraged smartphone use for certain purposes, such as looking up information or participating in discussions. Some schools allowed phone use after completing in-class assignments or between periods. Additionally, some teachers employed strategies like having students place their phones in a bag at the front of the class to prevent distractions. The stringency of these policies also changed as students transitioned from middle school to high school.
Read the full study here.