With the 2022-2023 school year, East High School has introduced a new phone policy and, as a result, a plethora of controversy has surfaced. As many individuals know, on September 22nd, the East community was rattled by the active shooter threat. Many students had to leave belongings, such as their cell phones behind, as a result of this new phone policy. Stowing phones in bins and shoe hangers have become a common practice in classrooms, which has caused many communication and safety issues among parents and their children. Is our new phone policy safe in this day in age?
This topic was discussed with a handful of East students to get the most raw responses and opinions. Biz Levin, a junior at East was stuck in the bathroom in the midst of this terrifying experience, and she stressed that the “only comfort was the communication with my mom and friends,” she follows this statement with, “it’s not okay to take away peoples only communication with their families. It’s unsafe and unfair.” Biz mentioned that law enforcement didn’t sweep the area she was in and without her phone, she wouldn’t have been able to communicate with law enforcement to inform them where she was.
Should the phone policy be taken away fully or just handled differently?
Junior Skye Vacanti brought up the idea of only taking students' phones away if it becomes an issue or distraction with that specific student. Letting students keep their belongings will allow a sense of responsibility and will make students feel safer and more in control in situations such as lockdowns.
Looking further into the cons of the phone policy is vital in perfecting it and finally finding a happy medium for both students and teachers. Considering our age, students should be trusted and capable of handling belongings such as phones in a school environment. Under different circumstances, the confiscation of phones is understandable and even respectable, but considering the amount of threats East has gotten and the terrifying events that took place on September 22nd, East needs to prioritize the safest option that will benefit student’s safety.
Phones have definitely actively changed how students learn in school, as well as how teachers teach. It is no secret that they are an inconvenience, especially to administrators. However, phones are not the only factor in a student's fragile education. Active shooter as well as bomb threats have rampaged highschools and might just outweigh the inconvenince of telling students to “put their phone away” ten times in a class period.