Morgan County Schools
Bylaws & Policies
 

7530.01 - STAFF USE OF CELLULAR TELEPHONES

The Board of Education will provide cellular telephones to employees who by the nature of their job have a routine and continuing business need for the use of cellular telephones for official Board business. Cellular telephones are provided as a tool to conduct Board business and to enhance business efficiencies. Cellular telephones are not a personal benefit and shall not be a primary mode of communication, unless they are the most cost-effective means to conduct Board business (i.e., because cellular telephone accounts are billed on a time-used basis, Board-owned cellular telephones and services should not be used when a less costly alternative method of communication is safe, convenient and readily available).

The Superintendent or his/her designee is expected to see that:

 A.the need for each Board-owned cellular telephone and cellular telephone service account is clearly justified for Board business purposes;

 B.alternative solutions for work production and communication have been considered;

 C.employees provided with cellular telephone service accounts understand the purpose and limitations of usage;

 D.cellular telephone service account invoices outlining the details of usage are received and reviewed for conformance with this policy;

 E.employees reimburse the Board for non-business use if required by this policy;

 F.use of a cellular telephone service account is terminated when no longer justified by business requirements, the employee leaves the Board’s employment, and/or when the employee has by actions demonstrated a disregard for the limitation of this policy.

Board-owned cellular telephones may be used for the following:

 A.to place calls in emergency situations.

 B.to place calls for the purpose of communicating with the administration, other staff members, or parents concerning classroom, school or County activities.

Cellular telephone service accounts are expected to be set at the minimum level that fulfills the business need for the position in question. The cellular telephone contract that is selected for an employee should be the one that provides a combination of services including number of minutes, coverage, and local call zone most nearly matching the employee’s recurring business needs. If the cellular telephone contract is based on minutes used, a minimal plan shall be utilized. In other words, the smallest plan available to accommodate the particular business need shall be utilized.

An annual review of the plans available shall be made to determine if the County’s cellular telephone plan is the most economical and responsible available. Additionally, at least once annually, the Superintendent or his/her designee shall review the employee’s actual usage (i.e., level of service) with the employee and, if warranted, select a different equipment usage account which more nearly matches the employee’s recurring business needs. Any change in provider and/or necessary adjustments to individual staff members’ plans shall be recommended for Board approval.

Possessing a Board-owned cellular telephone is a privilege and all employees are expected to use them appropriately and responsibly. Employees are responsible for managing the cost effectiveness of cellular telephone use by utilizing assigned landlines as available and appropriate. Employees should know that calls outside the immediate area might result in roaming charges, in addition to long distance and regular charges, and that the Board is charged for both outgoing and incoming cellular telephone calls.

Employee safety is a priority of the Board, and responsible use of cellular telephones includes safe use.

Cellular telephone calls are not secure. Therefore, employees should use discretion in relaying confidential information, particularly as it relates to students.

Employees must safeguard any Board-owned cellular telephone in their possession. Reasonable precautions should be made to prevent equipment loss, damage, theft and vandalism. Upon resignation or termination of employment, or at any time upon request, the employee may be asked to produce the equipment for return or inspection. Employees unable to present the equipment in good working condition when requested might be expected to bear the cost of a replacement. Employees who separate from employment with outstanding debts for equipment loss or unauthorized charges will be considered to have left employment on unsatisfactory terms and may be subject to legal action for recovery of the loss.

The Board reserves the right to audit all Board-owned cellular telephones and their use, which will include but not be limited to, a review of the monthly billing by Accounts Payable Supervisor. Board cellular telephones and cellular service account statements, invoices and payment documents are public records and, as such, may be subject to disclosure and review.

Use of Board-Owned Cellular Telephones for Personal Calls

The Board will seek reimbursement for any additional charges resulting from personal calls. Misuse of Board-owned cellular telephones may result in loss of the privilege (i.e., revocation) and possible disciplinary action against the employee.

Use of a Personal Cellular Telephone While at Work

Personal calls during work hours can interfere with employee productivity and be distracting to others, regardless of whether on a cellular or regular telephone. Employees are expected to use discretion in using personal cellular telephones while at work. Employees are asked to make personal calls during breaks and lunch period and to see that friends and family members are aware of the Board’s policy.

Violation of this policy may constitute just cause for disciplinary action up to and including termination.