T-mobile church tower

Little White Chapel in Burbank may be housing wireless telecommunication antennas in the future. School may ban cell equipment. (Cheryl A. Guerrero / Staff Photographer / March 2, 2012)

In the wake of a controversial proposal to install a telecommunications facility in a local church, the Burbank Unified School District is moving to ban similar equipment on any of its campuses.

The district’s spokeswoman, Kimberley Clark, said a sentence prohibiting cellular antenna equipment and towers on school property was added to the district’s safety policy by school officials on Monday. The move was a nod to neighborhood opposition to the telecommunications facility planned for the Little White Chapel on Avon Street.

“If that issue hadn’t come up, that wouldn’t be on our minds,” she said.

The change will go to the California School Boards Assn. and to the Burbank Unified school board for a vote, Clark said.

The city passed an ordinance last year allowing telecommunications facilities in single-family residential areas so long as they are on institutional buildings, such as a churches or schools.

Residents living near the Little White Chapel have filed three appeals to a decision by the Planning Board approving the T-Mobile project, citing such issues as declining property values, noise, and health concerns.

They’ve also raised concerns about how the facility will impact students at two nearby schools, Bret Harte Elementary and Luther Burbank Middle School.

The appeals are scheduled to go before City Council on May 22.