SHREVEPORT, LA - Things are moving quickly to change what happens in classrooms all across Louisiana. We know the State Senate has passed a bill to ban the use of cell phones by students in all public schools in the state. 

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House Committee Hears the Bill

And now, the bill has won the approval of the House Education Committee. And the vote was not even close. The panel voted 10-1 to advance the bill to the full house. Senator Beth Mizell of Franklinton tells KEEL News students will have to turn their phones in at the beginning of the school day or turn it off. Mizell says cell phones are a major distraction in the classroom and her bill will help solve that problem.

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Only Representative Beryl Amedee voted against the bill. Shreveport Representative Michael Melerine asked Mizell about concerns that students would not have their phones in the event of an emergency or an active shooter situation. Mizell says during an active shooter situation, students should be focusing on staying quiet and hiding rather than jumping on the cell phone to send out messages or post on social media.

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Getty Images

Mizell says she understands many systems already ban phones in class, but it's not mandatory for most. She says the problem is some teachers enforce it and others do not, so students push the boundaries. Mizell says under her bill, it would be mandatory to collect cell phones before class or make sure they are turned off.

When Will the Bill Be Heard on the House Floor?

Senator Mizell says she expects this bill will be discussed on the floor next week. If it's approved and signed by the Governor, this ban will go into effect for the school year that begins in August.

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