HARRISBURG – Lancaster County Sen. Ryan Aument plans to introduce legislation to limit students’ use of cellphones in schools through secure, lockable phone bags in which students would deposit their mobile devices until the end of the school day. There has been a steep decline in mental health in children since the early 2010s, with the suicide rate for girls age 10-14 rising 131% from 2010 to 2019. Not coincidentally, the percent of United States teens with smartphones rose from 23% to 73% from 2010 to 2015, with a quarter admitting to being online almost constantly. Now, teens spend an average of nearly eight hours on screens per day. In addition to the mental toll excessive smartphone and social media use has on children, behavioral issues have also increased translating into bullying, fighting, and costly pranks where students film themselves damaging school property and share the videos on social media. Aument is circulating a co-sponsorship memo seeking support of his measure. You can access Sen. Aument’s webpage with facts and data on the issue by clicking on his picture below.