Outdated rules regarding phones in class should be revisited

Dhangur Singh, Digital Media Editor

Mobile devices in school are a widely disputed topic. Phones can have both positive and negative influences, but the good outweighs the bad. Phones are important resources for students. They are assets for learning, are a convenient way to stay in touch in case of emergencies, and instill trust within the students and teachers. The opposition will argue that students aren’t to be privileged with phones during class, but there are many reasons for why they are important for their future in class and in life.  

First, phones are a benefit for education. For many classrooms, students will often have to do research and phones can assist the students in their work. Also, supplying every student with a personal computer can be difficult and expensive, so phones are a more affordable and convenient device for learning in the classroom. Some instances why phones are important for class are that they have stopwatches, dictionaries, and calculators.

Another reason why these mobile devices are exceptional for school is that they can be utilized for safety and in the case of emergencies. If necessary, a student could inform the police or call 911 in the event of a natural disaster or if an intruder was on campus. An example of when phones have been crucial to safety was back in 1999. At Columbine High School in Colorado, two people walked into the school with guns and homemade bombs in hope of doing some malicious things. Thirteen innocent students were murdered, but many were saved because one of the students who was hiding called 911 to describe the location and what the gunmen looked like. Since the student had his phone, he was able to prevent more casualties. These examples, especially with the publicized rise in school shootings, accentuates their need and makes them an asset that can supply safety and provide comfort.   

When students are allowed to keep their phones during school, there develops a sense of freedom, trust and respect between students, their teachers and the administration. Students being able to bring their phones shows a level of respect and independence in their work and habits. If there is mutual understanding, students will pay more attention during class. Trust is a trait that develops over time with high school students, and generally, they should be trusted. It is the student’s choice whether it is a smart idea to use phones for the right or wrong reasons. If inappropriately used, there can be a consequence from which they can learn.

Some might argue (especially many teachers) that phones are not suitable for school because they can be disturbing during class. A phone could be distracting if it isn’t on silent and it rings. Further, students could use phones to cheat. However, there are ways to manage these problems banning phones definitively. If students are caught using their phones inappropriately during class, there can be consequences. It is an important lesson for students to understand that there are consequences for their actions in life. Allowing them to have the decision to use or not to use their phones develops crucial moral and behavioral decision-making skills that they will need.

In conclusion, phones are necessary for students during school. They provide a way for students to do research during class that may not have been accessible otherwise, provide a way for students to contact safety in case of emergencies, and they develop traits of responsibility and trust within the student. There are people who will argue the negatives of phones such as they are distracting but there will always be a necessary lessons learned from the student’s decisions. The revolutionary invention of smartphones are very important for school and students and are crucial for developing skills for their future.