Paula Goggin,
Deputy Principal, Ursuline Secondary School, Cork

At the the Ursuline Secondary School, Cork we decided to try the PhoneAwayBoxes for our First, Second and Third year students. We recocognised the increased use of phones during the pandemic and the impact that this had on learning and socialising during the school day. We were also conscious of the pressure constant access to phones can place on students.

We are very happy with the boxes. It does take some monitoring but the girls and their parents have embraced the whole initiative and some students even admit to being ‘relieved’ to put their phones away for the school day!

Donnchadh Ó Cróinín,
Principal, Gaelcoláiste Carrigaline, Cork

We are delighted with the Phoneawayboxes that we installed earlier this year. They have been a superb addition to our measures in creating a safer learning environment for our students.

It’s about student responsibility. We have some students who might need their phones for a specific reason, so that’s taken into account. There will always be exceptions to every policy, and this is all about facilitating student learning.

Parents are happy too because PhoneAwayBox is so transparent. Everyone is settling down in their lessons and it means we’re avoiding unnecessary conflict with students which takes up a lot of time and takes time away from learning. Nobody enjoys confiscating phones or disrupting lessons over them.

We’re an iPAD school so we’ve embraced technology, but we also believe it’s important to use technology in a healthy way.

The service from Karl and Gerry was excellent and I would happily recommend this product to any other school.

John Lonergan,
John Lonergan was Governor of Mountjoy Prison until his retirement in 2010. He also wrote a book on parenting with the title “Parenting – raising your child in Ireland today”

I am really impressed with ‘Phoneawaybox’ and the initiative undertaken by Karl Hegarty and Gerry Ryan.

I love the philosophy ‘A plan NOT a Ban’. It is a very innovative approach which encourages student’s to take personal responsibility for their learning. The days of ‘banning’ phones in schools are numbered, it just doesn’t work: but without some controls phones can become a major distraction and disruption in classrooms. ‘Phoneawaybox’ is an excellent and balanced response to a complex issue.

With ‘Phoneawaybox’, phones are safe and secure, and students have access to them when they are on their breaks. Furthermore, teachers can readily observe who’s phoneawaybox is being used or not and the classroom is much more compatible with learning. Winners all round. Well Done

Ger Alley,
General Manager, The Heritage Hotel, Killenard, Co Laois

What initiative and creative but simple and hugely effective development. I placed my order for Phoneawaybox straight away. In our hospitality business, communication is key but in the correct form. Personal mobile phones can be a huge distraction to team members and customers.

Phoneawaybox offers our staff the best of both worlds, to be able to complete tasks efficiently and enjoy their personal phone time during breaks.

I feel this can have a huge space in the hospitality and professional world. Well Done.

Angela Delaney,
Director, Horizon Fire Alarm Systems

Mobile phones have been an increasing distraction to business for many years now. The impact on efficiency is evident. Time that cannot be reclaimed due to modern day information that is directly to hand. It is known that more and more people are becoming addicted to their mobile phones. When the phone pings or buzzes we have to look. The Phoneawaybox has enabled our company to eliminate such distractions from the office. It is a secure and efficient tool that has enabled our productivity and efficiency. A great piece of simple innovation. Delighted to have thus wonderful product on board.

Niamh Hannan,
Empowering leaders to build social and emotional awareness and resilience so that they inspire and lead teams to thrive!

That sounds like a wonderful initiative! Phones are such a distraction to learning and an interruption to social interaction but are of course like a third hand for young people and can’t be just cut off! This seems like a great way to manage phones in school whilst giving young people some autonomy too and respecting their right to own a phone, carry it to/from school, etc. It also puts parents’ minds at ease as their young person is contactable while commuting but not breaking rules by having a phone at school. I love it! Well done on initiating ‘Phoneawaybox‘ in your school 👏🏻 and best of luck with it.

Deirdre Fitzpatrick O’Reilly,
Author of the book Surfing the Waves of Stress, Mindfulness and Meditation Teacher

This is a fantastic idea. Every house should have them too. I am a firm believer that our smart phones have the biggest negative impact on our mental health and well-being. They cause information overload, reduce mental focus and don’t get me started on social media. I think you got the nail on the head with self discipline. That’s a important ingredient in every one’s life. It’s just to find the right balance with the phones and Phoneawaybox provides this.

Carmel O Sullivan
Lead Facilitator at School Leadership & Communications Clinic

As a former principal I can see immense practical value in this simple solution – www.phoneawaybox.com – Finally a very user-friendly system of student phone management for schools. Timely product by Karl Hegarty 👌

#schools #principal #schoolleaders #teachers #education #entrepreneurialmindset #codeofdiscipline #mobilephonepolicy

Dr Harry Barry – GP and author of “Anxiety and Panic and Emotional Resilience”

I have long advocated that the so-called ‘smartphone’ is actually adding greatly to these mental health issues. It is a weapon amongst other things of ‘mass distraction’!

I was therefore excited by this new initiative taken up by Principal Karl Hegarty and Gerry Ryan of Leinster Senior School. This is freeing up both the mind of the student and making life easier for their teachers.

Well done Karl and Gerry, it is my hope that this might become a policy in schools around the country’.

Articles / Research

Some recent articles, opinions and research about the effects of mobile phones in schools in Ireland and around the world.

Article: My London – Nov 2023

Wimbledon school becomes first in UK to force pupils to lock phones away in boxes during lessons

Click to Read Article

Article: Nesco Resource

3 Mobile Phone Policies to Enforce as an Employer

Click to Read Article

Article: The Irish Sun – July 2020

Principal devises special locker boxes in plan to make students ditch mobile phones

Click to Read Article

Article: Education Matters – June 2020

PHONE AWAY BOX – the healthy solution to excessive phone use

Click to Read Article

Article: NAPD Bulletin – Feb 2020

Those Darn Phones! Kildare Principal designs ingenious lockers for phones

Click to Read Article

Article: The Irish Times

Class action: the schools banning mobile phones

Click to Read Article

Article: Study International

Why mobile phones are being banned in schools across Western Australia

Click to Read Article

Opinion: RTE News

Banning phones in schools not practical, says NAPD head

Click to Read Article

Article: Irish Mirror

School in Co Down suspends three pupils over teacher Instagram video prank

Click to Read Article