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  • Writer's pictureBrandy Wear

Should Phones Be Allowed in Class?

Should you be allowed to have your phone out in class? Should phone violations be a thing? Should we get rid of the cell phone policy? 

Students should be allowed to use their phones for social activities relating to the educational system such as group projects. According to Bark, “Cell phones enable students to connect and collaborate with their peers and teachers more efficiently”.  Social interactions are good of course, but sending a quick text to a friend for a project is so much more efficient. 

Students need their phones for emergency situations. When my mom texts me in class I need to know what she said. Last year my mom texted me so I secretly, without getting a phone violation, checked my phone to see what she said. She said that there has been multiple lockdowns throughout Oregon and she wants me to stay safe, but no one has been found in any of the schools so it shouldn’t be anything to worry about. Not even a minute later we went into lockdown and was so grateful I checked my phone so that way I wasn’t as worried. If a situation were to happen like this again I’d want access to my phone for an emergency line.

Of course there are some downsides to having your phone out in class, making it the reason why we have these rules set in the first place. So what are those reasons? Phones cause distractions and encourage students to not have academic integrity. If your phone is in your hand, you are more likely  to use other apps on your phone instead of having it for educational purposes. If a BeReal notification goes off, would you be more willing to take a picture or write an essay?  Also, phones encourage plagiarism and cheating. You can easily look up answers to a test or copy and paste an article down for a written response assignment, causing teachers to not be able to rely on students to finish their work or ensure they will get the knowledge they need to pass their class.

I asked Mr. Bentea, our principal, what his opinion on having cell phones in class was and he said, “Technology is an important piece of instruction and since all students have access to a chromebook the need for a personal electronic device is unnecessary. We used to have a policy where students could have their cell phones out in class if it was for instruction, but when we did there were too many incidents where students were using their cell phones not for instruction.” After I got this answer I was curious what a student might think so I asked Chaya Mongkeya and she said,“Yeah because it’s easier to do research, and get to the Canvas app quicker and music can help a lot of kids focus.”

There are many pros and cons about having our cell phones out in class, so what do you think? Does the cell phone policies matter? Should we have our phones out in class, or should we just keep them in our pockets?

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