Dubai Private Schools ban social media, mobile use for students

Principals claim they regularly educate students about social media usage and offer advice during assemblies and seminars.

School Regulations and Cybercrime Laws

Certain private schools in Dubai have taken measures to limit or entirely prohibit students from using social media applications while on school premises. School administrators acknowledge the pervasive role of social media in students' lives but emphasize the potential risks of misusing these platforms, which could lead to violations of school rules and even legal consequences.

Ghadeer Abu-Shamat, Senior Vice President of Education and Superintendent/CEO of GEMS Al Khaleej International School, emphasized the need to ensure that the school community, including students and parents, is fully aware of the legal implications of misusing social media. She highlighted that actions such as sharing defamatory or inaccurate information are criminalized under UAE's Federal Decree-Law no. (5) of 2012 on Combatting Cybercrimes. As a result, the school enforces strict policies that prohibit mobile phone use and ban social media during school hours.

In some schools, students are required to seek permission before posting pictures from school on their social media accounts. School administrators are authorized to take action, including reporting incidents to authorities, against those who use social media to defame the school or individuals associated with it.

UAE Educational institutions

Educational institutions in Dubai are proactive in raising awareness about responsible social media use through workshops and school assemblies. Chandini Misra, Principal of Repton Al Barsha, emphasized their comprehensive social media policy that aims to foster responsible digital citizenship. While the use of social media apps is restricted during school hours, the school focuses on academic engagement and personal interaction. Workshops and programs are conducted to educate both students and parents on safe and responsible social media usage.

Education experts stress the importance of empowering students with knowledge about the consequences of their online actions and cultivating a sense of responsibility. As the digital landscape evolves, fostering a positive and secure online environment becomes crucial in shaping students into responsible digital citizens.

Read also: Learn about the new traveler protection regulations in Saudi Arabia

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