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Friday, August 10, 2007

Bloomberg Vetoes Bill Allowing Cell Phones Before and After School

The mayor has vetoed the City Council's bill to allow public school children to carry phones to and from school. It's a strange action given that the bill says nothing about what happens inside the school. Apparently, the mayor feels the need to come between parents and children and interfere in this family decision.

Here is what the bill says:
b. Any parent or guardian of any student may provide such student with a cellular telephone for any lawful use en route to and from school. No person shall interfere with the provision of such telephone to, or the use of such telephone by, such student.

c. Any person who is aggrieved by interference prohibited by subdivision b of this section shall be entitled to seek equitable relief in any court of competent jurisdiction.

d. Nothing in this section shall be construed to affect or limit the right of any school or law enforcement official to enforce regulations regarding the use of cellular telephones.
For the full text click here.

The Council approved the bill 46-2 and is expected to override the mayor's veto. Families will then have the law on their side.

InsideSchools has good coverage of the story including press accounts.

UPDATE: The council overrode the mayor's veto to pass this bill into law.


NYC Educator said...

How incredible to veto a bill that passed by such an overwhelming margin. I wonder what the mayor expects to gain from it.

Anonymous said...

This is classic Bloomberg, he cast the veto because he can. He happens to be right. Cell phones impede education and by and large are a distraction. Schools cannot enforce banishment especially in high schools. But, the Veto speaks volumes about the arrogance and unwillingness to work with any group, lawmakers/educators/parents.
I predict if the city council overrides the Veto, Bloomberg will have school officials/administrators be in contempt of the law, if not outright ignore it. Welcome to corporate education.