Smartphones will soon be banned in Dutch classrooms

The Netherlands plans to ban smartphones, tablets and smartwatches in the classroom unless they are needed in class. Education Minister Robert Dijkraf presented a corresponding bill to parliament on Tuesday in The Hague. The mobile phone ban will apply from next year, and schools will set individual rules for this by October. Students who depend on their mobile phones, for example for medical reasons or because of a disability, can continue to use them.


Especially when students are on social media or using other apps during class, it distracts them from the topic. This disrupts social interaction in class, according to a letter from Dutch Education Minister Robert Dijkraf to the Dutch parliament.

His ministry refers to this Scientific investigationsAccordingly, the learning performance of students decreases the more they use smartphones. Four out of ten students said they spend less time on homework because of their smartphones. PISA studies have also shown a negative relationship between smartphone use in school and performance in reading, math, and science.

The Dutch Ministry of Education had previously consulted scientists and parent-teacher representatives. All participants emphasized the importance of focus and participation during the lesson. The ministry said pupils have the right to an ideal learning environment without undue distraction.

In 2018, the French National Assembly passed an expanded ban on cell phones in schools. The German federal states, which are responsible for school education, depend to a large extent on schools taking responsibility for themselves, and this has also been the case in Bavaria for a year now.

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