NY School Cell Phone Policies

by NYC Firm Schools on August 31, 2009

As the new NYC School year is beginning, so too is the constant ringing is many students’ ears. The ringing is a form of temporary tinnitus. It is most likely caused by the deafening silence their ears experience as they are forced to turn their cell phones off after a summer of heavy talking.

A total ban on cell phones in NYC public schools has long been a focus of the Mayor’s office, and in fact he recently discussed it on his weekly radio address, saying that cell phones are a distraction that can harm a student’s chances for advancing.

“They just don’t belong in the classroom any more than they, you know, than you should be texting when you’re driving

While Cell Phone use in Public Schools is (supposed to be) banned, Firm Schools tend to have their own rules and regulations on usage. Allowing students to carry but not use cell phones is an alternative that only works if the students comply and accept the consequences for non-compliance. Some parents readily step up to support their child’s use of a phone during school hours, but with the exceptions of emergencies, some common sense should prevail regarding acceptable phone usage.

Common Sense Phone Policies in School

Arguments for Cell Phone Usage

  • Cell phones brought to schools should be used if there is a true emergency at school or on the way to or from school or if there needs to be a change in the pickup-dropoff schedule that needs parental consent.

Arguments Against Cell Phone Usage

  • Cell phone usage during school hours are a steady source of distraction, not only for the offending student, but to those around him. It may seem harmless, but even the habit-forming glance-in-the-backpack at the cell phone screen, done once every other minute, tends to add up over time.
  • Some students have used phones to facilitate cheating by taking pictures of exams and sending those pictures to other students.
  • Teaching techniques, taken out of context in a video, can be damaging to the reputation of a teacher or other students.
  • Valuable phones are stolen, leading to increased school insurance and decreased morale among the school popularity.

As there are so many reasons to not bring a cell phone into the classroom, but just a few, very important reasons to bring it in the first place, make sure you have your child abide by their school cell phone usage policies and help enforce those policies for the betterment of your child’s education.

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