Creating A Child Cell Phone Contract!

The challenge of child cell phone use is still very much an open debate, and will likely remain so!  Whether or not you feel that kids should or should not have their own cell phone, and at what age, the fact remains that there are a lot of  children out there who do have access to their own mobile phone.  Thus, learning how to best manage their usage is a good use of a parent's time.

Kajeet, the cell phone service made specifically for kids, has based its entire business on providing tools to help parents manage the safety of our kids, while meeting the needs of children growing up in a mobile-centric world.  If you haven't already, you can learn more about Kajeet's parental controls by visiting Cell Phones for Kids.

Make Them Sign A Parent-Child Cell Phone Contract
Kajeet proposes that parents create a kind of child cell phone contract with our kids to help lay the groundwork for responsible and safe use of their cell phones.  The guidelines they suggest are not specific to Kajeet services, and therefore can be used by any parent with a child that has their own mobile phone.  You can review The Ground Rules on their website, where you can also download the sample contract.  Although their article is from a number of years ago, it still remains 100% relevant, as the principles are around behavior and responsibility, and not tied to the technology they're using.  Here's an overview of the spirit of the contract that Kajeet proposes:
  • Children will only communicate with people whom they know, and if they get a call or message from someone they don't know, they will tell their parents.Kajeet Parent-Child Cell Phone Contract
  • Kids are not allowed to give out their mobile number without permission from their parents.
  • They will use their phone only during days and hours agreed to by their parents, including times where usage is inappropriate (ex. during meals, at school, while driving, etc.).  Parents can choose to specifically define these times in the contract.
  • Kids will agree to keep their phone on while out with their friends and answer calls/texts from their parents within a reasonable amount of time.
  • Children can take and send pictures and videos so long as they'd be willing/comfortable letting their parents see them.
  • They can access websites on their phone as allowed by their parents (sites are listed in the contract).
  • It defines how much money parents and children will contribute to the monthly bill.
There are some other details and goodies in the sample child cell phone contract sample.  Overall, I think the contract is well thought out, fairly comprehensive, and simple and easy to understand.  I feel that putting something like this together with our kids is a fantastic idea, and shows a thoughtful communication technique.

You may also want to consider including what the penalties will be if certain elements of the contract are not followed, or rules are consistently broken.  And of course, to be effective, you'll want to ensure that you follow through with whatever punishment/ramifications you define!  It's definitely an interesting approach that's worth at least considering.  Please note that I am not affiliated with Kajeet; I'm sharing this only due to its quality!s

Child Cell Phone

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