Teacher suspended for jamming students' cellphones

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A Florida science teacher has been suspended for running a signal jammer to prevent his students from using their cellphones in class. (KTRK)

A Florida science teacher has been suspended for running a signal jammer to prevent his students from using their cellphones in class.

School board members in Pasco County approved Dean Liptak's five-day, unpaid suspension on Tuesday. Liptak didn't contest the decision.

Officials say Liptak activated the jammer in his Fivay High School classroom from March 31 through April 2.

"We are supposed to have them off and in our backpacks, but the majority of students at my school have them out during the whole class," Fivay junior Braxton Mora told ABC affiliate WFTS-TV.

He later told a school district investigator that he never intended to cause problems. He said he thought the jammers were allowed as long as they were not intended for malicious purposes.

Superintendent Kurt Browning wrote in a reprimand letter that Liptak had potentially violated federal law and that the signal jamming could have potentially interfered with others trying to call 911 during an emergency.

"I don't think he understood the impact that this could have had on parents trying to reach students or public safety concerns or law enforcement. I don 't think he had any idea of that. It was a situation with some pretty poor judgment," Pasco County school district employee relations director Betsy Kuhn told WFTS-TV.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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