We’re almost into the last quarter of 2023, and a topic we have seen being covered by the media is the excessive use of screens and digital devices among our students. Screen time in schools can be a valuable educational tool when used appropriately and in moderation. Schools need to have clear policies, provide guidance on responsible use, and continually assess the impact of technology on student learning and well-being. However, striking a balance of screen time in a student’s life can be difficult. Why? Because 90% of the time, a screen sits in their pocket.

The use of screens before Covid-19 was much lower. Here are some staggering statistics from the Central Statistics Office around screentime during the pandemic.

  1. Student’s screen time has increased since the start of the pandemic for 96.5% of students. Before the pandemic, most students spent between 1-4 hours on a device per day (76.1%), but during the pandemic, most students spent 4+ hours on a device daily (72.5%).
  2. 30.3% of students experience solely adverse effects of increased screen time, while only 9.2% have positive effects.

We highly recommend reading the full report here. It gives excellent insight into screen time’s effects on students’ mental and physical health.

The Benefits of screen time in school

When incorporated into the classroom, digital screens and devices greatly benefit students, teachers and parents. Here are a few of the benefits;

Interactive Learning

Adaptive Learning

Cost savings

Real-world skills


Interactive whiteboards, for example, allow teachers to engage students in a different capacity and allow a break from the mundane reading of books.


Specialised educational software can help children with learning disabilities, whether individually, with a teaching assistant or amongst the class as a whole, to ensure inclusivity.


While an initial cost is associated with implementing digital screens, schools and parents can save money on textbooks and printed materials over time.


Students will need to decide what career they would like to pursue later in life. Most jobs will require some level of digital skills, and beginning digital learning in school will only help give a head start for the future.

With the increased time spent in front of screens in schools and increased screen time usage after the pandemic, the question of striking a balance between both remains.

Guidelines for screens during schooltime

  1. Limit Non-Educational Use: Restrict access to non-educational websites and apps during school hours. Implement content filtering and web monitoring tools to ensure compliance.
  2. Lead by example: Teachers and staff should adhere to screen time limits during school time and refrain from using their phones.
  3. Promote Online Safety: Teach students digital literacy skills to help them make informed decisions about technology use and navigate the online world safely and responsibly.
  4. Communicate with Parents: Communicate with parents about screen time regulations and involve them in monitoring their child's screen use during school hours. Educating parents about how much time students spend learning from screens so they can adjust screen time in their homes if necessary.

Guidelines for screens during homework


  1. Screen-Free Breaks: Incorporate short, screen-free breaks during homework sessions to rest the eyes and recharge.
  2. Create a Homework Workspace: Create a quiet, well-lit, comfortable workspace specifically for homework. Remove any digital distractions from this space. It should also be a phone-free zone.
  3. Homework Schedule: Establish a consistent homework routine with specific start and end times.
  4. Book vs. Online: Encourage students to look for the answer in their books before searching online. Quality over quantity always.
Zeeko Internet Safety Icon

Internet Safety Seminars

Zeeko Education provides virtual and on-site Internet safety training to suit every school’s needs. Some of our packages also include parent seminars to ensure you are up to date with the most relevant information for your child, their class, and their age group. Our bookings are now open for the next academic year. Slots are filling up for September and October already. If you are a teacher looking to book a seminar, simply fill out the form here.