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Multi-Tiered Safe Pouch Turns Phone Addictions into Motivations

how multi tiered safe pouch work
Multi-Tiered Safe Pouch Turns Phone Addictions into Motivations 18

Use Students’ Addictions to Stop Phone Distractions in the classroom and solve many problems.

The problems associated with cell phones and social media in schools are complex and multifaceted, involving various issues that impact students’ behavior, academic performance, and overall well-being. Some of the key challenges associated with cell phones and social media in schools include the following:

  1. Distraction: Cell phones and social media can be a major source of distraction for students, making it difficult for them to focus on their schoolwork and participate in class discussions.
  2. Cyberbullying: Social media can also be a platform for cyberbullying, which can have serious negative consequences for students’ mental health and academic performance.
  3. Addiction: Cell phones and social media can be addictive, leading to negative impacts on students’ behavior and academic performance.
  4. Sleep disruption: The use of cell phones and social media can also disrupt students’ sleep patterns, leading to fatigue, poor academic performance, and other negative health outcomes.
  5. Privacy concerns: Social media can also raise concerns about privacy and safety, as students may be vulnerable to online predators or other risks associated with sharing personal information online.
  6. Social comparison: Social media can also contribute to feelings of social comparison, leading to negative impacts on students’ self-esteem and mental health.

The problems associated with cell phones and social media in schools are complex and multifaceted, involving various issues that impact students’ behavior, academic performance, and overall well-being. Teachers and parents can help students develop good habits and succeed in school and beyond by understanding these challenges and developing effective strategies for addressing them.

Power of Addiction

Addiction is a powerful psychological factor that can influence students’ behaviors in a significant way. Addiction is a pattern of behavior characterized by the repeated use of a substance or engagement in a behavior despite negative consequences. In the context of education, addiction to technology and digital devices, such as smartphones, can have a significant impact on students’ behavior and academic performance.

Addiction can influence students’ behavior by creating a strong desire to engage in the addictive behavior or use the addictive substance. This desire can override other priorities or motivations, leading students to prioritize their addiction over other important tasks, such as completing homework assignments or participating in class discussions.

Additionally, addiction can impact students’ behavior by affecting their moods and emotions. For example, if students are addicted to social media, they may experience negative emotions such as anxiety or depression when they cannot access it. This can lead to negative behavior, such as moodiness or irritability, impacting their interactions with others and leading to many class discipline problems.

Furthermore, addiction can impact students’ behavior by altering their brain chemistry. Research has shown that addiction can alter the brain’s reward system, leading to changes in behavior and motivation. For example, addiction to technology can lead to a desire for instant gratification and a decreased ability to delay gratification. This negatively impacts students’ ability to focus on long-term goals and develop sustained intrinsic motivation.

Addiction is a powerful psychological factor that can significantly impact students’ behaviors. By understanding addiction’s role in behavior and academic performance, teachers and parents can develop effective strategies for motivating students and promoting good habits. By leveraging students’ addiction to technology as an extrinsic motivator and creating a positive classroom culture that fosters sustained intrinsic motivation, we can help students develop the skills and habits necessary for success in school and beyond.

Almost Impossible to Break the Addictions?

Breaking away from addiction is often difficult and challenging for anyone, including students. Addiction is a complex psychological phenomenon that involves both physical and psychological dependence on a substance or behavior. The following are some reasons why it can be challenging for students to break away from their addictions:

  • Strong cravings: Addiction creates intense cravings that can be difficult to resist. The desire to engage in addictive behavior or use an addictive substance or device can be overwhelming and difficult.
  • Withdrawal symptoms: When someone is addicted to a substance, their body and brain depend on it. If they try to stop using the substance, they may experience physical and psychological withdrawal symptoms such as headaches, nausea, anxiety, and depression.
  • Emotional attachment: Addictive behaviors or substances can provide a temporary escape from stress, anxiety, and other negative emotions. Students struggling with these emotions may feel emotionally attached to their addiction to cope with their feelings. 
  • Environmental triggers: Addiction can be reinforced by environmental triggers, such as certain places, people, or situations. These triggers can create powerful associations between the addictive behavior or substance and certain environments, making it difficult for students to break away from their addiction in those situations.
  • Social pressure: Peer pressure and social norms can also make it difficult for students to break away from addiction. Students may feel pressure to conform to the behavior of their peers, even if it is harmful to them.

Breaking away from addiction is a challenging process that requires a combination of willpower, support, and professional help. By understanding the reasons why addiction is difficult to overcome, teachers and parents can develop effective strategies for helping students break away from their addictions and develop sustained intrinsic motivation and good habits.

The Neuroscience of Addictions

There is a significant body of scientific and neuroscience research that supports the idea that addiction is a complex phenomenon involving chemical changes in the brain. Studies have shown that repeated exposure to addictive substances or behaviors can alter the levels of certain chemicals in the brain, including dopamine. This neurotransmitter is associated with pleasure and reward.

For example, a study published in the journal Trends in Neuroscience found that addiction can alter the brain’s reward system, leading to changes in behavior and motivation. The study suggests that addiction can lead to an imbalance in the brain’s dopamine system, which can contribute to the development of addictive behaviors.

Similarly, a study published in the journal Addiction Biology found that exposure to addictive substances can lead to changes in the brain’s glutamate system, which is involved in learning and memory. The study suggests that these changes can contribute to the development of addiction and the difficulty of breaking away from addictive behaviors.

Other studies have shown that addiction can impact the structure and function of the brain in significant ways. For example, a study published in the journal Neuropsychopharmacology found that addiction can lead to changes in the brain’s gray matter, which is involved in cognitive function and decision-making. The study suggests that these changes can contribute to the difficulty of breaking away from addictive behaviors.

Overall, scientific and neuroscience research suggests that addiction is a complex phenomenon that involves chemical changes in the brain. By understanding the underlying mechanisms of addiction, teachers and parents can develop effective strategies for helping students break away from their addictions and develop sustained intrinsic motivation and good habits.

Phone and Social Media Addictions

Cell phones and social media are designed to be addictive through the use of various techniques that engage users and keep them coming back for more. These techniques are often based on principles of behavioral psychology and neuroscience.

One of the key techniques used to make cell phones and social media addictive is using variable rewards. This technique provides users with unpredictable rewards, such as likes, comments, or messages, delivered at irregular intervals. This creates a sense of anticipation and excitement that can lead to addictive behavior.

Another technique used to make cell phones and social media addictive is the use of “infinite scrolling.” This feature allows users to endlessly scroll through content, creating a sense of endless possibility and a desire to keep scrolling. This can lead to addictive behavior, as users find it difficult to stop scrolling and disengage from the platform.

Social media platforms also use social validation to make them addictive. This involves providing users with feedback on their posts, such as likes or comments, that reinforce their social status or self-worth. This can lead to addictive behavior, as users seek to maintain or increase their social validation by posting more frequently or engaging with other users.

Finally, cell phones and social media are designed to be easily accessible and convenient. This allows users to quickly and easily engage with the platform, making it difficult to disengage or break away from the addictive behavior.

Overall, cell phones and social media are designed to be addictive through the use of variable rewards, infinite scrolling, social validation, and convenience. By understanding these techniques, teachers and parents can develop effective strategies for promoting good habits and reducing the negative impact of cell phones and social media on students’ behavior and academic performance.

Negative Impacts on Students’ Behaviors

Social media can have a significant impact on students’ neurological chemicals, according to research in the field of neuroscience. One of the key neurotransmitters that social media can impact is dopamine, which is associated with pleasure, reward, and motivation.

Studies have shown that social media use can trigger the release of dopamine in the brain, creating a “reward loop” that can lead to addictive behavior. For example, a study published in the journal Psychological Science found that social media use activates the brain’s reward system similarly to other pleasurable activities, such as eating or sex.

Furthermore, social media can impact the brain’s prefrontal cortex, which is involved in decision-making and impulse control. A study published in the journal Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience found that social media use can lead to changes in the prefrontal cortex associated with decreased self-control and increased risk-taking behavior.

Other studies have shown that social media can impact the brain’s stress response system, leading to increased levels of cortisol, a hormone associated with stress. A study published in the journal Computers in Human Behavior found that social media use can lead to increased levels of cortisol in the body, which can have negative effects on mood, cognition, and behavior.

Overall, scientific evidence suggests that social media can have a significant impact on students’ neurological chemicals, particularly dopamine, which is associated with pleasure, reward, and motivation. By understanding the neurological effects of social media, teachers and parents can develop effective strategies for promoting good habits and reducing the negative impact of social media on students’ behavior and academic performance.

Extrinsic Motivations Build Intrinsic Motivations

Students’ behavior can have a significant impact on their academic success and overall well-being. As such, teachers and parents alike are constantly seeking ways to improve students’ behaviors and habits. One approach that has gained attention recently is using extrinsic motivation to build intrinsic motivation and good habits. Extrinsic motivation, such as rewards or punishments, can initially motivate students to develop good habits, which can then lead to intrinsic motivation and sustained good behavior.

According to Edward L. Deci, a professor of psychology at the University of Rochester, “extrinsic motivation can be a powerful tool for building intrinsic motivation because it can help students develop an interest in a particular activity or behavior.” This sentiment is echoed by numerous other psychologists and researchers who have studied the effects of extrinsic motivation on behavior.

Research has shown that extrinsic rewards can be an effective tool for building good habits and intrinsic motivation. For example, a study conducted by Dr. Mark R. Lepper, a professor of psychology at Stanford University, found that children who received stickers for completing a task were more likely to continue the task than those who did not receive stickers. Similarly, a study published in the Journal of Educational Psychology found that students who received tangible rewards for reading books were more likely to continue reading than those who did not receive rewards.

While extrinsic rewards can be effective in the short term, it is important to note that they should not be overused. As stated by Dr. Richard M. Ryan, a professor of psychology at the University of Rochester, “the key is to use extrinsic rewards in a way that encourages students to develop an interest in the activity or behavior, rather than solely focusing on the reward itself.” Gradually reducing the use of extrinsic rewards and providing opportunities for students to reflect on their progress and success can help build intrinsic motivation and sustainable good habits.

Multi-Tiered Safe Pouch incorporates students’ phone and social media addictions as extrinsic motivation to build intrinsic motivation and good habits. We will examine the psychology behind this approach and provide scientific research evidence to support its effectiveness. Additionally, we will discuss specific strategies that teachers and parents can use to implement this approach in their classrooms and homes. By understanding and utilizing the power of extrinsic motivation, we can help students develop the skills and habits necessary for success in school and beyond.

Furthermore, with the proliferation of technology, students are increasingly addicted to their phones and other devices. This addiction can be a significant distraction in the classroom and can negatively impact students’ behavior and academic performance. However, it can also present an opportunity for using extrinsic motivation to build intrinsic motivation and good habits. By using students’ addiction to their phones as an extrinsic motivator, schools and parents can provide incentives for positive behavior and help students develop the self-discipline necessary for success.

How Multi-Tiered Safe Pouch Phone Addictions to Motivations Effectively.

First, it is important to recognize students’ phones are their property and rights; however, schools and teachers have expectations that require all students to follow when they are on campus or in class. It is an Education Ed Code, or Law, in California and most states. 

Mistakes–Don’t See the Big Pictures

Most schools make common mistakes because they only see phones as problems, and they want to implement quick solutions and hope they will work. More importantly, such school leaders often implement incomplete solutions by shifting the responsibility to either teachers or administrators rather than working together as a team. Below are three common ineffective solutions we observed in most schools.

1. Passive cell phone policies without practical accountability and consequences are ineffective.

Passive cell phone policies in classrooms refer to policies that prohibit the use of phones but do not include practical accountability and consequences for breaking the rules. While these policies may seem effective in theory, they often have little impact on actual phone use in the classroom.

Without practical accountability and consequences for phone use, students may still be tempted to check their phones during class, knowing that there will be no consequences for doing so. Moreover, passive policies do not encourage students to develop good phone habits, and they may not be aware of the negative impacts of phone use on their academic performance and mental health.

Additionally, passive policies can be difficult to enforce, and teachers may not have the time or resources to monitor phone use during class actively. This can lead to inconsistencies in enforcement, which can create confusion and frustration among students.

Overall, passive cell phone policies without practical accountability and consequences have little impact on actual phone use in the classroom. It is essential for schools to establish clear phone usage policies and practical accountability measures to ensure students are aware of the negative impacts of phone use and are held accountable for breaking the rules.

2. School leaders shifting responsibility to teachers to create engaging lessons does not help reduce phone distractions if there are no effective phone policies being enforced.

Shifting the responsibility of creating engaging lessons solely to teachers does not necessarily help reduce phone distractions in classrooms if there are no effective phone policies being enforced. While engaging lessons can be a useful tool in maintaining student attention and reducing phone use, it is not the only factor that affects phone use in the classroom.

Without effective phone policies being enforced, students may still be tempted to use their phones during class, regardless of how engaging the lesson may be. Moreover, teachers may not have the time or resources to create engaging lessons for every class, and it is not their sole responsibility to do so.

Additionally, shifting responsibility to teachers without implementing effective phone policies can create frustration and burnout among teachers. It is not fair to place the burden of reducing phone use on teachers alone, as it is the responsibility of the entire school community to ensure a productive and focused learning environment.

Overall, while engaging lessons can be a useful tool in reducing phone distractions, it is not the sole responsibility of teachers to create them. Effective phone policies must be implemented and enforced to ensure students are held accountable for their phone use and that the learning environment remains productive and focused.

3. Extreme phone policies that lock up ALL students’ phones throughout the school days or confiscate them face many backlashes, resistance, and unintentional problems for teachers and administrators.

Extreme phone policies that involve locking up all students’ phones throughout the school day may not be practical and can face many backlashes, resistance, and unintentional problems for teachers and administrators.

Firstly, locking up all students’ phones can create logistical problems, as teachers and administrators may not have the resources to manage and store all of the phones. Additionally, this can lead to students losing or damaging their phones, creating a liability issue for the school.

Moreover, extreme phone policies can face resistance from students, parents, and teachers who feel that their rights to personal property and communication are being violated. This can create a negative environment and lead to resentment among students, parents, and teachers.

Additionally, extreme phone policies may unintentionally create other problems, such as increased stress and anxiety among students who feel disconnected from their peers and social media. Furthermore, students who rely on their phones for communication with parents or guardians may feel anxious and isolated without their phones.

Most importantly, imagine the legal liability for schools and districts if an unexpected tragedy like a natural disaster, mass shooting, and similar energy.

Why don’t many school administrators want to deal with phone distraction problems?

Many school administrators may not have the resources and time to support teachers to deal with students who violate phone policies over time. This can be due to various factors, such as limited budgets, understaffing, and competing priorities.

Effective enforcement of phone policies requires consistent monitoring and support from school administrators, as well as appropriate consequences for students who violate the rules. However, this can be a time-consuming process that requires significant resources, such as additional staff and technology.

Furthermore, administrators may have competing priorities that take precedence over phone policy enforcement, such as addressing student safety concerns, managing budgets, and meeting academic performance standards. This can create a lack of resources and time for supporting teachers in dealing with phone policy violations.

Additionally, some school administrators may not view phone policy enforcement as a high priority or may not be aware of the negative impacts of phone use on students’ academic performance and mental health. This can lead to a lack of support for teachers in dealing with phone policy violations and a lack of accountability for students who break the rules.

Many school administrators may not have the resources and time to support teachers in dealing with phone policy violations, leading to inconsistencies in enforcement and a lack of consequences for students who break the rules. It is essential for administrators to prioritize phone policy enforcement and provide the necessary resources and support to ensure a productive and focused learning environment for all students.

How Multi-Tiered Safe Pouch empowers teachers and administrators to stop phone distractions in classrooms.

How Extrinsic motivations help build life-long intrinsic motivations

Extrinsic motivations, such as rewards and punishments, can be very effective in improving behaviors and building intrinsic motivation later. Extrinsic motivations provide clear guidelines and expectations for students, as well as immediate consequences for their actions. This can help students understand the importance of following rules and making positive choices.

Furthermore, extrinsic motivations can help students develop good habits over time. By consistently rewarding positive behavior and punishing negative behavior, students can develop a sense of accountability and responsibility for their actions. This can lead to a sense of intrinsic motivation, where students make positive choices for their own benefit, rather than simply to avoid negative consequences.

Moreover, extrinsic motivations can help students develop a sense of accomplishment and pride in their achievements. When students receive rewards for their positive behavior, they are more likely to feel a sense of accomplishment and pride in their achievements. This can create a positive cycle, where students are motivated to continue making positive choices to receive more rewards and positive feedback.

Overall, while extrinsic motivations may not be the only factor in improving behavior and building intrinsic motivation, they can be a useful tool in creating a positive learning environment. By providing clear guidelines, consequences, and rewards, teachers and administrators can help students develop good habits and intrinsic motivation over time.

How Multi-Tiered Safe Pouch incorporated a Multi-Tiered System of Support, Positive Behavioral Intervention System, and Restorative Practices to stop phone distractions in classrooms.

Flexible, Scaleable, and Individual Teacher-Driven implementation

Unlike many other programs, individual teachers can immediately implement Safe Pouch in their classrooms without waiting for schoolwide initiatives, so they can gain many benefits immediately.

These types of programs provide teachers with the autonomy to design and implement interventions that are tailored to their individual classrooms and teaching styles. This approach allows teachers to take ownership of the intervention process, which can lead to greater motivation and engagement in the implementation process.

Moreover, flexible and scalable intervention programs can be adjusted and modified based on the needs and preferences of individual teachers and students. This allows for greater flexibility and adaptability, as teachers can modify the intervention as needed to ensure its effectiveness.

Additionally, flexible and scalable intervention programs are often more sustainable than school-wide interventions, as they can be more easily implemented with little starting cost and scale up if needed.

All a teacher needs is an Essential Blue Safe Pouch Starter Set of 7-15 pouches, 1 poster, and 1 end-nipper. When a school wants to scale up and implement in other teachers’ classes, they just buy more sets.

Lastly, when schools want to maximize the full benefits of the Multi-Tiered Safe Pouch, they can implement Tier 2 Orange Safe Pouch without having to start all over.

How does a Multi-Tiered Safe Pouch work?

Safe Pouch Turn Phone Addictions into Motivations 1
Multi-Tiered Safe Pouch Turns Phone Addictions into Motivations 19

Set High Expectations for all students with practical, impactful, and immediate accountability and consequences

safe pouch classroom management poster
safe pouch classroom management poster

Because all students know they will get the immediate consequences for ignoring phone policies, at least 75% – 95% of the students will follow the expectations. Without a Safe Pouch, most teachers either attempt to confiscate students’ devices or class suspends the students for refusing to give up their devices. Either method often causes the teachers to waste valuable instructional time on meaningless and disruptive arguments with students because students are very possessive of their devices. It’s a risk that many teachers, especially new or shy teachers, would never take again.\

Safe Pouch Stop Phone Distractions in the classroom
Multi-Tiered Safe Pouch Stop Phone Distractions

Introducing Blue Safe Pouch! Now, teachers can lock up a student’s device (and earbuds) in a pouch when they are caught having them out in class. Since the students get to keep their devices at their desks, they will not argue with the teachers and may face harsher consequences such as confiscation of devices, parents’ call, or referral. After class, the students bring up the pouch, and they can get their device out and move on. Students who repeatedly ignore the phone policies will no longer just get their devices locked up, but they will also get parent calls and possible referrals.

More importantly, other teachers and I also implement the pouch to reduce tardiness and students’ eating in our classes. We locked up any tardy students’ devices, and we observed an immediate and significant reduction of tardiness in all classes. Likewise, we lock up any snack when we catch students having it out or eating in our classes. Instantly, we no longer have problems with students snacking in our classes, so there are no more noisy crunchy sounds of chips in our classes.

However, the most important benefit is using the Safe Pouch to support students in danger of failing. We give those students extra credit points for touching up their phones daily until they pass. Instantly, we observed immediate changes and re-engagement among those students and other students in the class. Since we implemented the strategies, we have been appreciated by students’ parents and even most of the students themselves. For us, our parents’ calls are now ended with immediate and practical interventions and solutions to support the struggling students.

Because schools don’t have to lock up or confiscate all students’ devices, they may have reduced their workload by 95%. More importantly, most of the problems are solved in a class by the teachers immediately; therefore, reducing the workload for administrators to only work with the most challenging students.

Empower Administrators and Maximize Effectiveness with Tier 2 Orange Safe Pouch.

Multi-Tiered Safe Pouch Stop Phone Distractions in Classroom
Multi-Tiered Safe Pouch Stop Phone Distractions in Classroom

With Blue Safe Pouch in the classrooms, 85% – 95% of the problems are solved in the classrooms by the teachers. However, the rest of the 10% is the most defiant and challenging students. As we mentioned before, most administrators do not prioritize phone distractions as important problems; rather, some even think it is the teachers’ problem for having little classroom management skills or boring lessons. Even though some of those administrators are aware of the severity of the problems, very few will take any serious actions to enforce impactful consequences when a teacher refers students because of cell phone problems.–they talk to the students and let them back to the class the next day.

It’s all changed with the Tier 2 Orange Safe Pouch. An administrator or their secretary staff can immediately lock up the students’ devices for the rest of the school days or multiple days if students repeatedly ignore cell phone expectations and policies. Imagine what happens inside those students’ minds as they carry their phones in an Orange Safe Pouch around schools and among their peers. Soon, the students will influence their peers not to ignore cell phone expectations in any classroom. Therefore, Safe Pouch respect students’ rights while using students’ phone addictions and phones as extrinsic rewards and consequences to improve students’ behaviors.

Over time, the Mutli-Tiered Safe Pouch will become the symbol of high expectations, immediate accountability, and positive consequences among all students and staff. Altogether, it will create a culture of distractions free while teaching our students to build essential life-long habits and responsibilities.

Audio Ended, but the analysis of the solution continued.

Redefine Schools MTSS/PBIS with Safe Pouch

Most schools’ discipline procedures and consequences remain slow, reactive, and punitive, but students’ needs have changed. Schools try to change their approach and philosophy in disciplining students to be less punitive and more equitable. People think that punitive consequences may stop students’ disruptive and unsafe behaviors, but such consequences set students to fail in the long term. For example, punishment like suspensions worsens achievement gaps because it removes students from their learning settings. More importantly, growing studies suggest that schools often give harsher punishment to underserved groups of students.

            To illustrate, one unique problem that most schools face today is the misuse of cell phones in schools. On the surface, the problem with cell phones is only a learning distraction. However, it is much worse. Misusing cell phones worsens many existing problems and creates many new challenges. It fundamentally changes schools’ cultures and students’ learning experiences.

For example, cell phones streamline cyberbullying and bullying in schools. It takes seconds for a student to post an image or video on many social media platforms, and those posts often go viral and are delivered to millions of viewers around the world. Inappropriate images and videos will scar victims for life, online and in person. Worst of all, the person who posts it is often anonymous, and the bully feels emboldened to post the worst message knowing they can hide from all consequences. Even if schools know who the bullies are, they cannot do much for the offenders. The worst thing those students get is a few suspensions. For those students, suspensions are like excused short-term vacations.  However, after a post went viral, schools became the most toxic and hostile places for the victims. Some students cannot deal with the constant online and in-person harassment at school, and students often harm themselves. According to,

             “Youth suicidal ideation, attempt and completion are on the rise. Far more adolescents have suicidal thoughts or attempt suicide and survive than those who die by suicide. Results from the 2019 Youth Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System show that 18.8% of high school students seriously considered attempting suicide, and 8.9% actually attempted suicide. The cost of suicide attempts in the United States in 2019 was estimated to be $70 billion.”

            It’s clear that today’s schools have to do more to protect students from cyberbullying and bullying. They have to do more than just give PowerPoint presentations and YouTube videos. Feeling sorry for the victims when it is too late is not an answer. It’s the schools’ responsibility to enforce the expectations and appropriate consequences to punish a bully to the extent that the bully feels the equal pain of what they have done to their victims. Of course, the most challenging problem is creating and enforcing an equitable and impactful consequence that does not set up those students on that path of failing.

            Another unexpected consequence due to the misuse of cell phones is the increase in the achievement gap and learning inequity. Before cell phones, off-task students had nothing to do if they opted out of learning activities. Now, students can access unlimited sources of entertainment on their phones. Accessing and using cell phones is so easy that students quickly use their phones and hide it in seconds. Teachers constantly have to remind students to put their phones away or stop using their phones during class. When teachers call parents or refer students to administrators, it often takes days for administrators to enforce any consequences. Furthermore, some students may change their stories and put the blame on the teacher. Consequently, a simple problem turns into a toxic situation that often results in misunderstandings between teachers, students, parents, and other staff. Now, the students feel victimized in the classroom, or the teachers give up on the students and let those students fail. Consequently, many teachers just give up and let students be on their phones.

            Furthermore, programs like Positive Behavioral Intervention System (PBIS) and Multi-tiered System Support (MTSS) that have no practical implementation or accountability make it worse.  PBIS/MTSS often requires teachers to document many interventions before school administrators can enforce harsh consequences. The process ensures that teachers provide all students with necessary interventions before punishing any students. It is an ideal and equitable process on paper, but any classroom teacher would find it impractical. Allowing defiant and disruptive students to act up without any impactful consequence is a dangerous recipe to create an unsafe learning setting. It’s basic psychology. We cannot expect to change students’ behaviors by lecturing students. Often, people do not do what is right because it’s right; but they are forced to because of the consequences of doing what is wrong.    

            After almost a decade as a high school science teacher, I only see the problems getting worse. Of course, schools continue to do their best to support all students. However, the same problems are labeled with different names, and their solutions are the same. Very few people want to tackle the problems because it’s easier to decorate with new acronyms.

            After the death of a student from one of my feeder schools, I spent hundreds of hours exploring and inventing practical tools and strategies to solve the underlying problems of students’ inappropriate and unsafe behaviors. Schools cannot afford to bandage the deep-cut problems at the sacrifice of students’ learning and lives. Schools must educate students when they are still educatable.

            After many months of research and many different prototypes, I invented Safe Pouch (US Patent No. 10,980,324)  based on applications of Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, Vygotsky’s Zone of Proximal Development, and Skinner’s Operant Conditioning. These are basic and foundational psychology of human behavior and cognitive development.

            I invented Safe Pouch NOT to create a phone-free school or a phone-free classroom. I invented and implemented Safe Pouch to be the missing impactful and positive consequences and rewards that schools have been missing. Safe Pouch® is an intervention tool that immediately enforces meaningful accountability without sacrificing student learning opportunities. Teachers and staff will pouch up the phones of FEW students who need multi-tiered intervention and support. There are different pouches for different tiers of interventions. Of course, Safe Pouch does not replace other essential interventions such as talking to students privately, calling parents, or suspensions; rather, Safe Pouch enhances and redefines those interventions by enforcing immediate and impactful accountability easily and quickly.

How does Safe Pouch redefine MTSS/PBIS?

            Before we look at how Safe Pouch® redefines schools’ MTSS/PBIS, we need to know what Safe Pouch is. There are two different Safe Pouch® for different tiers of intervention and support: Blue and Orange.

            The Blue Safe Pouch has a dividing mechanism that can be quickly engaged or disengaged with a small, portable magnet. Each teacher will have at least one of the magnets in their classroom. Students, teachers, or any person can use the magnet in the classroom to release the dividing mechanism.

            However, an Orange Safe Pouch ® needs a very strong magnet with a very strong pull force. The magnet is very expensive. Luckily, each school only needs one at their Main Office because the Orange Safe Pouch is for MTSS Tier 2 or 3 students. Because there is only one super strong Magnet in a school, students would need to wait in line to release its dividing mechanism. In other words, students who pouch their phones in an Orange Safe Pouch ® have to pouch up their phones for the remainder of their school day. As students carry the Orange Safe Pouch ® with them throughout the day, it helps students to self-enforce the school’s high expectations among themselves. The Orange Safe Pouch ® will soon become a symbol of your high school’s expectations.

Safe pouch’s built-in innovative safety prioritizes students’ safety and the constant need for wireless communications. Its on-pouch hole and two holes of the dividing allow a user to access and control their phones inside a pouch. For example, students can make emergency calls during an emergency. Also, only a few students who need MTSS/PBIS interventions would pouch up their phones, and many other students can call 911 during an emergency. Furthermore, the dividing mechanism does not require a specialized or propriety key, and any strong-enough magnets can release the dividing mechanism. Finally, all teachers have at least one of those magnets in their classrooms.

What does MTSS/PBIS look like without Safe Pouch?

            Without Safe Pouch ®, teachers would wait for days for administrators to enforce harsh consequences if any at all when teachers refer students to administrators. Often, students would get a slap on the wrist, small talk, or a parent call. By that time, it was already too late. The students don’t even remember what they did yesterday. How are they going to reflect on what they did a week ago?  When administrators deal with so many students, they don’t have the time to do it.

            “I don’t give a f*ck about referral.” “Suspensions are awesome.” “I don’t care if you call my parents.” These are some common statements in schools among many students in today’s schools. These inappropriate comments are a red flag to teachers and administrators about the ineffective disciplinary procedures and consequences in a school.

            With Safe Pouch, teachers do not have to wait on administrators or students’ parents to enforce immediate and impactful consequences. For most students, the only two main things that could affect students’ behaviors: are fear of their parents and their addiction to cell phones. Safe Pouch ® enhances and redefines all aspects of schools’ discipline procedures and consequences using these two factors.

            To illustrate, we can look at the unique problem of cell phones in schools again. When a teacher catches a student using their phone or has it out, they would give the student a choice: Pouch it Up or Go to administrators for an Orange Safe Pouch® and get a parent call. Now, the two consequences are harsh enough to improve students’ behaviors, but neither consequence would remove students from their learning setting. The two choices of consequences are clear and easy to enforce immediately.  More importantly, the lesser consequence of Blue Safe Pouch® is easy, private, and positive for students, but it is able to physically solve the problems of cell phones. Of course, teachers can update the intervention online if needed.  If students repeatedly ignore your class expectations, teachers can now call parents and tell parents to make their kids pouch their pouches every day for extra credit. With Safe Pouch, there is zero chance of misunderstanding, and the consequence of Blue Safe is too rewarding and positive for any student to refuse.

            To understand how Safe Pouch® redefines MTSS/PBIS and transforms school cultures, we look at the integration of different foundational psychology in implementing Safe Pouch: Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, Skinner’s Operant Conditioning, and Vygotsky’s Zone of Proximal Development.

Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs

            Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs explains why cell phones and their many apps have become an essential tool and need for students, teachers, or anyone. Cell phones are not just a technology, but it evolves into a big part of a student’s identity. When schools try to confiscate a student’s phone, it is like taking away a piece of a student’s identity. More importantly, cell phones become the most impactful extrinsic consequence or reward to improve students’ behaviors. The existence of cell phones is both a curse and a blessing in today’s education.

Hierarchy of Needs with Safe Pouch
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            When we look at students’ behaviors, we can simplify them into two groups: good and bad behaviors. As teachers, our goal is to stop bad behaviors while encouraging good behaviors.

good and bad behaviors with Safe Pouch
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The Psychology Behind Safe Pouch: Skinner’s Operant Conditioning

            Skinner’s Operant Conditioning is the main behavioral psychology that has been used in many different professions, from military training to parenting. More importantly, Skinner’s Operant Conditional has been implemented in different aspects of TK-12 education to help educate our students. I invented Safe Pouch to implement Skinner’s Operant Conditioning, using students’ addiction to cell phones to stop students’ bad behaviors while encouraging students’ good behaviors, which I described above.

Skinner Condition With Safe Pouch
Multi-Tiered Safe Pouch Turns Phone Addictions into Motivations 22

Vygotsky’s Zone of Proximal Development (Cognitive Psychology)

            Looking at Vygotsky’s Zone or Proximal Development, it is essential for educators to use Safe Pouch to teach students to use cell phones appropriately. Students may know how to use cell phones, but they have no control over their cell phone usage. They are addicted to unlimited entertainment on cell phones, so it is essential for teachers to help students learn to control their own cell phone addiction in academic and professional settings.

Vygost Zone of Proximal Develop with Safe Pouch
Multi-Tiered Safe Pouch Turns Phone Addictions into Motivations 23

By combining the three critical psychology theories above to integrate with Safe Pouch, I use Safe Pouch to redefine schools’ MTSS/PBIS. Safe Pouch is the immediate and impactful consequence or reward that schools MTSS/PBIS need to be practical and effective. Different Safe Pouches are implemented at different tiers of MTSS to enforce immediate and impactful consequences.

MTSS and PBIS with Safe Pouch
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An important component of any successful implementation in a school is not forcing all teachers to implement the program; rather, it is to create and implement a program that inspires other teachers to implement it. Many schools try to force their teachers to implement a program, but it only takes a few teachers to resist ruining the impact of a program. Implementing Safe Pouch does not require all teachers to implement it; rather, we all need some teachers who want to empower themselves with Safe Pouch. Some teachers who have “easy” classes would never need Safe Pouch, but teachers of “regular” or “challenging” students would need to solve the problems in classes.  Likewise, not all teachers equally care about their students’ learning or are equally committed to their teaching jobs. Those teachers who no longer care about supporting students’ achievement because they have given up on dealing with cell phones and similar problems will just not care. Therefore, those few teachers will refuse to do it no matter what, and forcing them to do it only bring more headaches. As school leaders, we can only empower teachers who still care about their profession and students’ learning. Therefore, we have everything created for those teachers to implement Safe Pouch in their classes.  For example, we have ready-to-use posters for teachers, so teachers can immediately use Safe Pouch and enforce the redefined MTSS in their classes. The benefits of using Safe Pouch will soon spread to many other teachers, and they will also want to try Safe Pouch in their classrooms.

Why is now the time for effective cell phone policies in schools?

Some schools have a cell phone policy that bans cell phones during school hours. Students must store their cell phones in their lockers or designated areas during the day. Some schools require all students to put their cell phones in a lockable case when on a school campus and during school hours, which students cannot access or operate unless they are open using a proprietary key.

In a world where technology is constantly evolving, schools must keep up with the times and prepare students for the future. Banning cell phones in school would be an ineffective policy that would do more harm than good.

For one, a cell phone ban would be nearly impossible to enforce. With so many students carrying phones at all times, it would be a logistical nightmare to collect and confiscate them all. And even if phones were successfully confiscated, students would find other ways to access them – through friends or family members, for example.

A cell phone ban would also prevent students from using their phones for educational purposes. Several apps and websites can be used for learning, and many students use their cell phones to access these resources. Banning cell phones would limit students’ ability to learn outside the classroom.

Finally, a cell phone ban would significantly inconvenience students and families. In an emergency, a cell phone is the quickest way to reach a parent or guardian. If there were a fire or another type of crisis at school, students would be cut off from their parents if they didn’t have their phones.

In recent years, there have been several mass shootings in schools. In many cases, these shootings could have been prevented if students had been able to use their cell phones. For example, being able to call for help during an active shooter situation could save lives. Locking all students’ phones instead of having them available creates a safety risk for the students and staff.

A cell phone ban would also prevent students from using their phones to record evidence of bullying or other types of harassment. In some cases, this footage has been used to help hold perpetrators accountable and bring about change. The potential benefits of cell phone usage during an emergency are undeniable.

Having unclear and impractical cell phone policies is like having no policies.

However, having no cell phone or relaxing policies can harm students’ well-being and learning.

An example of an ineffective cell policy is a policy that gives students multiple warnings before taking action. For example, a common consequence is first consequences for a first violation is a verbal warning and asking students to put it away. Then, a second violation would be confiscating students’ phones, and the teachers will contact the parents/guardians. A third violation would be referred to the administrator for further disciplinary consequences.

The policy is not practical because it is not enforced consistently. If students know they will only receive a warning for the first offense, they will likely continue using their phones in class. Even though the policy does address what happens if a student continues to use their phone after receiving multiple warnings, it is impractical for any teachers to keep track of how many times each student violates the policy. Even when teachers refer students to administrators for third violations, few administrators will have the time and resources to take it seriously. They send them back to class. However, the policy is outdated as it does not address the issue of how easily students can use their phones secretly in class. The lack of clarity and impractical consequences makes it difficult for teachers and administrators to enforce the policy. Consequently, having such impractical cell phone policies is almost like having no policy at all.

Other Dangers of Ineffective Cell Device Policies in Schools

Cell phones have also been used to engage in cyberbullying and bullying others. In some cases, students have used their phones to record footage of themselves bullying others and then posting it online. This can be extremely harmful to the victim and can lead to lasting psychological damage. In other cases, students have used their cell phones to send threats or derogatory messages to others. This behavior can create a hostile and unsafe environment for all students.

In some extreme cases, students have been driven to suicide after being bullied. In one case, a 13-year-old girl named Rebecca Ann Sedwick killed herself after being cyberbullied by two classmates. The girls had sent her messages telling her to kill herself, and she eventually did. This tragedy highlights the very real dangers of bullying and cyberbullying.

For all these reasons, it’s clear that a cell phone ban in school would be impractical and ineffective. Instead of banning phones, schools should focus on teaching students responsible use. Cell phones can be a valuable tool in the classroom if used correctly. With the right policies in place, students can benefit from using their phones while maintaining focus and attention in class.

Effective cell phone policy and solution with Multi-tiered Safe Pouches.

After a tragedy happened at one of my feeder schools, I invented the Multi-tiered Safe Pouch to stop cell phone distractions and misuse of smartphones in school. Most importantly, the Multi-tiered Safe Pouch and proven implementation solution allow all staff to work together as a team to make school discipline procedures more positive, impactful, and immediate. A multi-Tiered Safe Pouch is a teaching tool, an impactful consequence, and an incentive. Let’s examine how it is possible in today’s classrooms and schools.

First, we must look at how the unique built-in safety features and other innovative features of Multi-Safe Pouch work.   First, the pouch’s unique centered hole allows students to access and control their phones. Most importantly, the Dividing Mechanism is NOT a lock and key mechanism. However, it effectively prevents students from taking their phones out while allowing them to access and control their phones inside. Instead, the pin of the Dividing Mechanism effectively converts a pouch opening into two openings to prevent students from taking their phones out. The thin pin maximizes the possible sizes of two openings to let students access and control their phones inside. During an emergency, students can still access and control their phones to make an emergency call.

Most importantly, the Dividing Mechanism does not use any key; instead, anyone can use any magnet with strong-enough strength to release the inserted pin in seconds. Because there are no specialized keys, schools can purchase as many magnets for all of their teachers and other staff. Anyone can use the magnet to release the pin in seconds during an emergency. More importantly, it prevents schools from blindly enforcing policies that ban cell phones in their schools because anyone can buy magnets online to release the pin.

Another essential safety feature is the two different tiers of Safe Pouches. Each tier uses a different magnet with a different level of pull force. The Blue Safe Pouch only needs a small and portable magnet with a little strong pull force, but the Orange Safe Pouch needs a larger magnet with a much stronger pull force. How does having multi-tiers Safe Pouch put students’ safety first and empower teachers and administrators to transform schools’ slow, ineffective, and punitive disciplinary procedures and consequences?

To understand how it works, we need to look at the proven cell policy other teachers, and I implement in our classes and schools.


safe pouch classroom management poster
Multi-Tiered Safe Pouch Turns Phone Addictions into Motivations 25

First, the policy tells what all students must do before they enter any classroom–put their devices in their backpacks instead of other places. Also it also addresses the problems with earbuds because many students are listening to music in class. Students would hide their earbuds behind their hoods or hair. The clear and specific expectations and directions prevent students from arguing with teachers that “they were not using it.” If the device is in their backpack, it is out of sight. Even if students have it in their pockets, they would be afraid to take it out in class. 

Second, to implement the policy above, schools would assign teachers a set of 10-15 Blue Safe Pouch and a small magnet to release the pin of the Blue Safe Pouch’s Dividing Mechanism. When students violate the rule for the first or second time, a teacher can enforce impactful and immediate consequences without wasting instructional time or dealing with possible conflicts of confiscating students’ phones. Students’ phones are in a Blue Safe Pouch, and they cannot touch them again. Students are given two choices but choosing to pouch up their phones in a Blue Safe Pouch and keep them at their desks is much easier. There are no more meaningless verbal warnings, and it instantly stops phone distractions. Likewise, it sets examples for other students in class, so more students will not be tempted to take their phones out of their backpacks.

Most importantly, only a few students who violated the policy have to pouch their devices, so many will still have their phones. If there’s an emergency, many students can call emergency numbers to get support immediately.

If a student breaks the school policy more than once, the teachers will call their parents. If the student doesn’t stop breaking the policy, the teachers might refer them to the administrators. But if administrators use Orange Safe Pouch, they don’t have to waste their time and resources enforcing impactful consequences. They need to pouch up the students’ phones and take students’ IDs for at least one school day. Students get their IDs when students return the pouch after school. The Orang Safe Pouch is more effective than suspending students from class, so it would reduce the school’s over-suspension numbers. For many schools, most administrators try not to suspend students because it negatively affects the school’s Dashboard. Many schools’ policies fail because most administrators have no choice but to send students back to the classroom without any impactful consequences. With Multi-tiered Safe Pouch, it is no longer a problem for administrators and classroom teachers.

Those students with Orange Safe Pouch can still access and control their phones to answer and make calls since they keep the pouches and their phones with them. More importantly, a few students will pouch up their devices in Orange Safe Pouches so that many other students can contact emergency during an emergency.

Also, students can pass around the small magnet to release the pin of the Dividing Mechanism to remove their phones in seconds during an emergency.

Multi-Tiered Safe Pouch gives struggling students a level playing field.

Some teachers allow their students to use phones in class. The teachers feel they can’t stop their students from using their phones, so they might as well not try. When students use their phones, they are not paying attention to the lesson and not participating in class. Unfortunately, most of these students are high-risk students who might not pass if the teacher does nothing about it. That is why all teachers need to have an effective policy that uses a Multi-tiered Safe Pouch so that all students have a fair chance at success.

The many benefits of a Multi-Tiered Safe Pouch do not stop there. Other teachers and I use Blue Safe Pouch as a positive incentive to help struggling students. For example, we call the parents of students who fail to provide help through MTSS. If those students have their phones in a Blue Safe Pouch during class, they get extra credit. If a teacher has extra Blue Safe Pouches, they can also offer the extra credit opportunity to other students. Ultimately, it effectively turns Blue Safe Pouch into a positive teaching tool instead of negative consequences.

The Pouch Point Reward System is an excellent way for students to put away their phones before class starts. Students can earn points by putting their phones in the Blue Safe Pouch, and the teacher releases them at the end of class. We have an auction where students can use their points to bid for prizes each week. Any leftover points will be turned into extra credit at the end of the grading period. This way, you discourage phone use in class, and your students are also learning math and entrepreneurship skills!

Many students come to class early to get their pouches when there is a limited number of Blue Safe Pouches, reducing the number of tardy students.

Multi-Tiered Safe Pouch can help reduce suspensions, tardiness, and classroom management problems.

It’s also no secret that school administrators are forced to limit suspension. Simultaneously, suspending students does not work because it does not address the root of the problem. It’s also a punitive measure that does not teach students anything. When students are suspended, they often miss out on valuable instruction time. They also tend to feel resentful and disconnected from school. Finally, suspending students can lead to a spiral of bad behavior that is hard to break. These factors make suspension an ineffective way to deal with students’ repeated minor misbehaviors.

Phone distraction in class is a big problem, but the Multi-tiered Safe Pouch is an effective and practical solution. With Multi-tiered Safe Pouch, administrators can take students’ phones and IDs without suspending them from class. The Blue Safe Pouch can be an impactful and practical consequence and a positive incentive to help struggling students. The Pouch Point system is an excellent way for students to put away their phones before class starts. Not only is the Multi-tiered Safe Pouch effective, but it is also impactful and practical.

Administrators can use the Orange Pouch as an alternative to suspensions for minor inappropriate behaviors. For severe violations, administrators can also use Orange Safe Pouch with suspensions. It is not a secret that most challenging students do not care about getting suspended. Those students are only afraid of suspensions because of their parents’ reactions. However, students without any support from parents will not care about suspensions. Instead, some would brag that they got suspended as a badge of being bad.

However, all these students care about their teen images and are addicted to cell phones. When those students return from suspensions, administrators will follow up by pouching up those students’ phones in Orange Safe Pouch for at least a school day to help students make a positive transition to school. Most importantly, it helps remove those students from the toxic content on social media that has been spreading since they were out. Often, those toxic online conversations escalate into more school fights and possible events that endanger other students.  At the same time, it sets examples for other challenging students in positive and effective ways.

Overall, I invented Safe Pouch®, not just a tool but it is a ready-to-implement solution that brings immediate changes in schools positively and proactively. Altogether, Safe Pouch® and its implementation have become a bridge between traditional educational discipline to the modern necessities of today’s students’ needs. Safe Pouch is a bridge that brings all teachers and other essential stakeholders to work together as a team to support all students effectively, easily, and immediately.

Below are possible measurable benefits and how to achieve them:

1. Stop cyberbullying and bullying in schools.

            Most schools passively address cyberbullying by passively training teachers during staff meetings or through online videos. They passively present to students during assemblies. We’re more passively talking about it rather than implementing any practical solution. Unfortunately, many schools do not actively try to mediate or solve cyberbullying until too late. Cyberbullying often causes school fights, depression among students, and even school shootings. 

            Most cyberbullying activities and other forms of bullying often involve social media, and cell phones streamline the process in front of our eyes. Sadly, many schools fundamentally fail to understand the problems and apply ineffective solutions. For example, some schools think they can teach students to use cell phones appropriately by forcing all the responsibilities on their already busy teachers. Instead, they implement restorative practices or similar practices to help students reflect on their actions and change their behaviors. Sadly, these practices are ideal on paper, but they are not practical in today’s schools. Instead, they underestimate students’ addiction to social media and other entertainment on cell phones. It is like asking drug addicts to stop using drugs by talking to them about the danger of drugs while putting the drugs in front of the drug addicts.      

            Safe Pouch® tackles the problems by addressing all different aspects of cyberbullying in schools and at home. Cyberbullying only occurs when a bully sends a message to many receivers, and the receivers can receive and engage with the message. Safe Pouch® makes it impossible for both. Even if a bully attempt to send the message somehow, the message would not reach other students during classes. Schools have strict cell phone policies and harsh consequences with Safe Pouch so students will not misuse themselves in classes. In the end, no one gives the bully any attention, and it is pointless to send a message that no one cares.  Orange Safe Pouch® is a proactive MTSS Tier 2 and 3 consequence, and it is difficult for bullies to use cell phones to cyberbullying or bully other students. Furthermore, most bullies are addicted to cell phones, so the Orange Safe Pouch would enforce both consequences easily and effectively.

            Another critical problem is that most students would run to school fights to record and share them on social media. This is a common and dangerous form of cyberbullying that has long-term impacts on the victims because anything shared on social media is there forever. It would destroy those students’ futures forever and ruin a school’s reputation.  Students who fought would return to school either feeling embarrassed or emboldened. Saturday schools, school suspensions, or similar consequences do not impact these students. Schools may need to pouch these students’ phones in Orange Pouches for many school days to remind the students not to fight again or be involved in any future fight.

2. Reduce classroom discipline and disruption.

            During my many years of teaching, I observed that many common classroom disciplines and disruptions are worsened by cell phones.  For example, a simple request to ask a student to put their cell phone away could quickly escalate into a hostile confrontation and result in referrals to administrators. Unfortunately, most administrators would not deal with these problems because they already have many other problems.  Administrators often send the student back on the same day or the next day. Worse, both the student and the teacher now hate each other silently. Instead, it creates a hostile environment for both students and teachers. Many experienced teachers know this very well, so they just let those students be on their phones. Without the right tool, teachers are forced to give up on the problems.

            Distractions with cell phones are the underlying causes of students’ failures and other academic problems in all classes. However, the number of students failing is higher in rigorous courses like science and math.

            Safe Pouch proactively addresses the problems. Combined with Orange Safe Pouch, defiant students cannot argue with their teacher because the consequences are positive and easy. Safe Pouch allows teachers and administrators to provide immediate and high-impact interventions quickly. There are zero assumptions or “ifs” when students get caught using their phones in classes. These clear and straightforward expectations create a positive and productive school culture daily.

3. Drastically reduce tardiness.

Most schools have tardy policies, but they are impractical. For example, some schools have a random tardy sweep, where they ask teachers to lock their doors so that other staff will give students detentions. Some schools even go extreme by finding students’ parents.

            Some schools would announce when they have their “random” tardy sweep. Some schools gather all students and put them in a lecture room for the entire period. Some ask their teachers to give detentions, refer them to administrators, or call homes. Nevertheless, all the above produce little long-term results. They only remind teachers how impractical the policies are, and most teachers pretend to implement them.

            Safe Pouch proactively addresses all different tardy aspects without wasting teachers’ and others’ staff time and removes any possibility of confrontations. The answer is simple: pouch up any tardy students to classes. It is consistent and clear to all students and staff. It shifts the responsibility to students rather than the teachers or school administrators. Of course, the students may lie, but they would not dare to take it out in class. Also, students without a cell phone would be required to get a Tardy pass and may get a parent call. Altogether, this will save school administrators and teachers time and headaches. It also improves schools’ ADA and saves schools a lot of money.

4. Support parents at home.

Many schools try to have community outreach programs or events, but most have few long-term benefits for their parents. For example, they have after-school training or assembly for parents that often only attract involved parents.

            Safe Pouch proactively supports parents at home. Schools can lend out Blue Safe, a magnet to parents, to support students at home if parents cannot afford it. The cost of Safe Pouch, a portable magnet, is a low-cost investment, but it immediately empowers parents at home.

            Currently, many parents rely on grounding their children or confiscating their children’s things.  Safe Pouch allows parents to create a positive and consistent learning setting at home. When their children are studying, they will pouch students’ phones in a Blue Safe Pouch, and their children can still listen to music, charge the phone, and access and control their phones inside. These physical expectations allow both students and their parents to make sure students have done their homework and physically force parents to be more involved with their children’s learning. Most parents would love this because it empowers them while creating opportunities to communicate with their children about their children’s schools before it is too late. Likewise, many parents would make sure their children don’t use a cell phone at night when they are asleep by pouching up their children’s phones every night. 

            Nonetheless, parents feel safe knowing their children can access and answer their calls or make calls during an emergency due to Safe Pouch’s innovative design.

5. Eliminate cell phone distractions.

            Most people who are no longer classroom teachers do not understand the negative impacts of distractions due to cell phones. However, it is not as simple as reminding students to put their phones away, confiscating them, or teaching them to use cell phones appropriately. In most classes, there are many students but only one teacher. Therefore, it is impossible to implement and enforce policies requiring a teacher to make all 36 students not use their cell phones without giving them a practical tool.        

            Safe Pouch proactively and immediately solve problems.  Safe Pouch makes it impossible for students to use their phones in any class secretly. Implementing Safe Pouch empowers teachers and other staff with a tool to enforce it easily and quickly. Combining Orange Safe Pouch for MTSS Tier 2 empowers teachers and administrators with an intervention tool to identify and re-teach students to follow school rules and expectations. Teachers and administrators can quickly enforce high-impact consequences by stopping instructions or confiscating students’ phones. All the teachers need to do now is hand a student a Blue Safe Pouch and say, “Pouch it Up or Get a Parent Call.” In rare cases, students refuse the pouch and take the phone out again. Instead, the teacher would refer the students to an administrator to pouch up their phone in an Orange Pouch if they have it out again. Immediately, very few kids refused the Blue Pouch again.

6. Reduce suspensions without sacrificing students’ learning.

            The number of suspensions in a school is an indicator on the California Dashboard.  More importantly, the number of suspensions in different groups of students also shows a school’s reputation. Like any measurement indicator, schools may be tempted to improve the numbers without solving the problems. For example, schools may indirectly remind and warn their administrators not to give out too many suspensions. If these administrators do not reduce their numbers, they may lose jobs or move to a different school. The fear is real. At the same time, ignoring the problems and allowing students to harm others is worse. Ignoring students’ inappropriate behaviors will encourage them to do worse and more harmful things in the future. Unfortunately, class or school suspension is the only option where students are removed from their learning settings.

            Safe Pouch proactively focuses on solving the underlying causes of increasing suspensions in schools. For example, Safe Pouch proactively creates a safer, more positive, and high-expectation school setting schoolwide using evidence-based and practical implementations. The core concept of the strategy is to “divide and conquer.”  Blue Safe Pouch implemented a schoolwide MTSS tier 1 to identify and support the most challenging students. More importantly, the Orange Safe Pouch redefines schools’ discipline by providing immediate and high-impact disciplines that force students to reflect and learn from their mistakes at much earlier stages before it gets any chance to grow into dangerous and irreversible discipline problems. More importantly, the consequence does not force administrators to suspend students from their classes, which is usually their only option when teachers refer students to administrators. The Orange Safe Pouch is a quick and high-impact alternative that does not waste valuable time for teachers and administrators. Instead, students must give up their time. The Orange Safe Pouch also reminds other students not to break school rules and expectations.

7. Integrated Social-Emotional Learning.

Teaching students Social Emotional Learning competencies is a complex process. Many schools incorrectly teach SEL through short activities like breathing practices or meditation. Teaching SEL competencies is more complex and meaningful than those activities. It requires teachers to create conditions that allow students to practice those skills.

            Safe Pouch teaches students to reflect on their actions to improve their behaviors before they worsen. The Blue Safe Pouch teaches students to use their cell phones appropriately and positively. The Orange Safe Pouch reminds them of your school’s high expectations, but it does so without being negative and punitive.  Overall, Blue and Orange Safe Pouch combinations help teachers and administrators teach students SEL schoolwide.

8. Reduce Ds and Fs

Many schools have high Ds and Fs in rigorous core classes like math, science, and English. The numbers are high in the 9th, seventh, and sixth grades. The high Ds and Fs in middle schools may seem insignificant, but they are critical to students’ future in high school and after graduation. When students learn not to care about grades, they also don’t care about them in high school.

            Many schools try to solve the problems by focusing on abstract aspects, such as changing students’ social and emotional mindsets or improving teachers’ teaching pedagogies and mindsets. Some schools focus on intervention programs like hiring additional counselors and psychologists to train teachers to support students. Some schools offer a more traditional approach, like paying teachers extra duty for after-school tutoring. Likewise, some schools ask teachers to accept late work, allow students to retake tests, or similar interventions. However, the solutions above are either too abstract or too late. How do you measure all students’ social and emotional changes? Likewise, how do you measure if teacher training has any positive impacts? By the time parents know their children are failing, it is already too late. Asking students to raise their from a few percent to a passing percent is almost impossible for these already struggling students.

            Safe Pouch proactively decreases Ds and Fs by creating more equitable learning settings. Students often opt out of learning activities because they have more entertainment options, such as social media, music, YouTube, mobile games, and many exciting apps. Safe Pouch eliminates any distractions due to cell phones and incentivizes students to do well.

            For example, schools and teachers can work together to create schoolwide expectations where they require students who are in danger of failing to pouch up their phones in Blue Safe Pouches and earn extra credit daily until they are no longer in danger of failing.

9. Increase CAASPP Scores.

Schools with low CAASPP scores in math and ELA may have evidence of learning in a school. Unlike other indicators, improving CAASPP scores is very challenging if the quality of learning remains the same. Schools need to address the underlying causes of the problems fundamentally. They need to create a learning setting with high expectations. All students are capable learners, but they will choose not to learn if they are distracted by the unlimited entertainment on their phones.

            Safe Pouch proactively solves different aspects of this problem. Before that, we need to assume that students’ CAASPP scores directly relate to students’ grades. Safe Pouch is an intervention tool to motivate students to improve their grades and learning.  Of course, the use of Safe Pouch is untraditional, but decades of unsuccessful traditional practices need out-of-the-box solutions. 

10. Increase enrollment and retain your teachers.

Specific predetermined boundaries often define traditional school enrollments; however, many of today’s schools have school-choice policies where students can choose which school they want to attend. Today’s schools need to attract students by offering unique CTE courses, AP classes, AVID, and other programs.  On the surface, offering these programs would increase their enrollment, but these programs only attract the best kids to the programs. The most challenging aspect for many schools is how to keep the kids in their schools or prevent students from dropping out.

            Having those programs is essential, but having a safer and more equitable school will positively affect your school and attract more students. But, more importantly, it prevents students from moving to different schools or dropping out.

            After more than ten years of teaching and working with many teachers, I invented Safe Pouch to implement ways that fundamentally transform school settings and learning experiences for students and staff. It promotes positive school settings and helps retain outstanding teachers who will significantly impact their students. 

Win Elements
Win Elements

I have more than a decade of teaching experience and school leadership at a high school. I co-founded Win Elements LLC to provide two practical tools to solve many school problems and transform the school culture of learning.
First,, and LMS website, is 100% tailored to meet the specific needs of classroom teachers and students.
Second, I invented Multi-tiered Safe Pouch to stop phone distractions, reduce tardiness, stop bullying, and support struggling students while prioritizing students’ safety and needs.

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