Less mobiles, more learning

January 28, 2024

The world-wide trend to getting mobile phones out of schools is growing.

Last month, governments in Sweden and Russia announced that they would be introducing bans on mobile phones in schools and implementing them as soon as possible.


Currently, the Education Act allows students to use mobile phones in class in some situations, but students have been exploiting this to bring phones to class unnecessarily.

Now Swedish politicians are calling for the Education Act to be tightened to ensure that primary schools are free of mobile phones – both in the classroom and during breaks. This means that students’ mobile phones will be collected in the morning and returned to them at the end of the school day.

Proposed changes to the Act would include allowing principals to provide exemptions to the ban where necessary.1


Russian politicians have voted to ban the use of mobile phones in classrooms to improve students’ learning.

The bill has yet to be approved by the Government’s Upper House and President Putin but are nevertheless expected to be implemented this month (January 2024).

The changes are supported by parents and teachers. 2

The Russian National Committee on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection (RCNIRP) has expressed concerns about children’s exposure to mobile phone radiation for many years. In 2008 it released a statement explaining why children are at particular risk of exposure and called on authorities to protect them.

‘According to the opinion of the Russian National Committee on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection, the following health hazards are likely to be faced by the children mobile phone users in the nearest future: disruption of memory, decline of attention, diminishing learning and cognitive abilities, increased irritability, sleep problems, increase in sensitivity to the stress, increased epileptic readiness’, the statement said. 3

Since 2004 it has recommended against the use of mobile phones by children under the age of 16.

Last year, a UNESCO report found that banning mobile phones from schools improves academic performance, especially for low-performing students. It also showed that approximately one in four countries had introduced bans or policies to restrict mobile phone use in schools. 4


  1. SVT News, 9.12.23, 

  2. Moscow Times, 6.12.23, 

  3. Decision of Russian National Committee on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection "CHILDREN AND MOBILE PHONES: THE HEALTH OF THE FOLLOWING GENERATIONS IS IN DANGER" ‘. Moscow, 14.4.2008, 

  4. UNESCO. 2023. Global Education Monitoring Report 2023: Technology in education – A tool on whose terms? Paris, UNESCO – see our blog on this here.

FM5 5G meter – Freedom Monitor (FM5) Complete 30

Measure the radiation from your/your children’s mobile phones with our FM5 Complete and/or FM5 Basic meters here

What can you do?

  • Keep mobile phones away from kids when they’re doing their homework.
  • Talk to your school about what it’s doing to keep mobile phones out of classrooms.
  • Forward this email to others to inform them, too.