Classroom no place for cell phones
June 11, 2004
The Lamar County School Board has adopted a policy that could mean suspension of students who bring cell phones to class. It is another means of punishment for students who violate an existing policy against cell phones, pagers and other electronic devices.
According to a report from The Associated Press, Oak Grove High School principal Wayne Folkes and his staff spent many hours this past school year dealing with the problem. Newer phones capable of taking pictures or sending text messages pose special problems, school officials said.
Some students were caught using the phones to take pictures of tests, which we would characterize as cheating. The text messaging feature of some phones could also be used for cheating.
Picture phones especially can be dangerous devices in the hands of anyone who use them improperly. They can help students cheat on tests and also be used to invade another person's privacy.
The classroom is no place for cell phones. It sounds as if the Lamar County school has the right idea by strengthening its policy against cell phones, pagers and other electronic devices.
At the very least, these devices are distracting and in education these days the less students and teachers are distracted from the academic work at hand, the better.