Should Cell Phones be Allowed in School - Pros and Cons

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Does the use of cell phones in schools during classes affect kids’ ability to study? Every parent knows it’s difficult to reach your child and get his attention when he’s playing with his phone. The same thing happens in school; teachers are struggling to get and hold children’s attention, reporting that kids are mentally absent and their ability to learn is very low if they are distracted by their gadgets.

Kids should keep cell phones silent and tucked into rucksacks, but they don’t

Smart mobile devices have their benefits when it comes to creative learning methods; cell phones in schools can be used for interactive learning, making various apps, easy research on the subject, finding creative approach to learning that will suit each student the best, etc...

However, according to teachers, pupils use mobile devices mostly as a distraction toys rather than a beneficial learning tool. Teachers say many of their pupils show signs of being addicted to technology; they are restless, nervous, intellectually absent from class and they use every possible chance to secretly check their phones for messages, social media updates or favorite games.

When kids use mobile phones in schools during classes, they often use it as a cheating tool. Teachers complain the struggle to prevent it constantly interrupts the class and reduces quality of study.

Cyber bullying is another huge negative aspect of having cell phones in schools; while "smart" phones are becoming ubiquitous part of kids’ lives – the increased prevalence of cyber bullying does also. Pupils will record inappropriate dialogues, fights, threats, unfortunate accidents and similar things that would otherwise remain unrecorded; then they will share it with others without thinking about consequences for those students who are being bullied, humiliated and ridiculed. Basically, cell phones in schools have made it easier for bullies to harass other students and brought bullying to a whole new level of harsher consequences, since we know once something is uploaded to Internet, it stays there forever.

We should embrace and harness new technology, but in the way that doesn’t hurt kids ability to study

Information superhighway is raging and schools are still struggling in finding the best solution on how to incorporate new technology into study process and use it safely and responsibly.

There are legitimate concerns that cell phones in schools are lowering the quality of study process and deteriorating classroom behavior.

However, the solution to this problem could be not to ban mobile devices that can improve studying, but to invest more resources into finding best balance of how much and when those devices should be allowed to use, and educating kids more on cyber bullying. Education packages such as CEOP’s ThinkUknow are good example on how to support informing children on cyber bulling, appropriate online behavior, use and misuse of social media and other new challenges they meet living in age of modern technology

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