One thing stands between teenagers and a good education: their phone
Re “MCAS data highlights missed learning: Experts worry about bridging the COVID gap” (Page A1, Oct. 11): MCAS scores may never increase significantly as long as cell phones are allowed in schools.
I am a retired high school teacher who taught health for over 25 years. In the early 2000s, I became concerned about the impact of cell phones on teenagers. Almost 20 years later, near the end of my career, I would hold up the phone in class and declare, “In 20 years we’ll be saying, ‘I don’t believe we’re putting this stuff in the hands of kids whose brains are developing.’ ” Well, it didn’t take long. Many experts are now saying that.
In addition to social connection, cell phones give teenagers autonomy, an exclusion from non-telephone communication—for example, with parents, teachers, and other influential adults.
Social connectedness used to be a byproduct of schooling. It is now the primary concern of many teenagers during the day. There are some exceptions: educationally motivated student, small percentage; a motivated parent who monitors and controls their child’s use during the educational part of the day. For the most part, however, children are free to choose whether to be involved in school.
Some parents and most teenagers may scream about student rights. I believe that among the primary rights of teenagers is the right to be protected from bad decisions, even if they are their own, and the right to a proper education. Most educators I’ve talked to agree that won’t happen as long as phones are in schools.
#stands #teenagers #good #education #phone