Students at a Chinese school have been forced to smash their phones on the floor after they were caught bringing the devices to the campus, according to reports.
Footage widely shared online shows three pupils being ordered by their teachers while taking turns to slam the handsets on the ground repeatedly.
Local officials told reporters they had been investigating the matter, adding that the school had banned students from taking their phones to the classroom.
Footage widely shared online shows three pupils at a school in Yunnan Province being ordered by their teachers while taking turns to slam the handsets on the ground repeatedly
The incident came to light after the footage was uploaded on Chinese social media by an anonymous web user.
It was allegedly filmed at an unnamed school in the city of Mengzi, south-western China's Yunnan Province.
The students are said to have been punished after they were caught sneaking their phones to the campus.
In the short clip, three girls are seen standing in line with their phones while a woman, believed to be the teacher, can be heard ordering them to smash the devices on the floor.
'Next one, hurry up,' the educator said. 'You, carry on smashing [it].'
In the short clip, three girls are seen standing in line with their phones while a woman, believed to be the teacher, can be heard ordering them to smash the devices on the floor
The pupils appeared reluctant as they tried to throw the handsets with a mild force.
The local authorities claimed that they had launched an investigation into the footage.
'We just saw the video. We are still investigating it.' an official told reporters. 'The school has banned [students from] bringing phones to help students focus on their studies, not playing on their phones.'
The footage has sparked a heated discussion online. Some netizens agreed with the school's approach while others claimed it had violated the pupils' rights.
One commenter said: 'I think this is great. If my son broke the rule and brought his phone to school, I would support the teacher for smashing his phone.'
Another user argued: 'If the students broke the rule, you can take away their phones and give them to the parents. This is intentionally damaging other people's goods, very inappropriate.'
Last month, another school in central China sparked controversy after forcing its students to throw their mobile phones in a bucket of water as punishment.
The principal insisted that the students' actions had been 'voluntary' and 'fully supported' by their parents.