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Beyond the Cave

A United Nations Ban on Cellphones: Could it happen here?

A look into the possibility of a complete or partial ban on cellphones at Summerville High.
A+quick+look+into+what+the+future+might+hold+for+students
A quick look into what the future might hold for students

In Europe, a law was passed banning all cell phones from educational institutions starting January 1, 2024. This occurred specifically in France due to the increasing number of issues between classroom disruptions and to improve the well-being of the students by protecting them from cyberbullying. 

Although this seems like a positive rule in some regards, should this law be applied to Summerville High School students? 

Currently, students at Summerville High School have the free ability to use their cell-phones, provided that that usage is outside of class (except in the cases of some emergencies) and does not interrupt class. 

However, this law has the potential to pass on to Summerville High School, despite varied opinions on its efficacy and whether it should be instated. 

So the question arises: Should Summerville apply a law banning cellphones on campus? If this were to occur, what are the advantages and downsides of doing so? 

Mr. Ruckman voiced that having cellphones completely banned in classrooms was a beneficial idea. 

“Having abandoned cellphones in all classrooms, like an out-and-out, it’s better for everyone.” 

— Mr. Ruckman

While teachers generally view banning cellphones as a positive endeavor, students are more divided about whether or not Summerville should instate this policy. 

Student interviewee Toby Tandy (11) shared concerns over whether students would be able to contact their parents if a schoolwide ban was put in place. 

Recently, there were altercations on campus and students feel the need to be able to communicate with their parents, out of safety. Junior Toby Tandy commented on being able to contact his parents should an issue arise.

 “No, because of what happened yesterday… I’m pretty sure his brother was worried about him and had to call and text his dad to make sure he was alright.” 

From students’ point of view, the concern arises that the banning may have an effect on students’ ability to communicate with close relatives if any concerns were to arise while they were in school. 

Mrs. Peterson suggested a compromise in her interview with BTC and shared aspects of the positive and negative qualities of the ban. 

“I am really strongly against having it [cell phones] inside of the classroom… There are times when students will ask to use their phones as calculators for their financial sections, and I say yes, but I am really against them in the classroom. I am up in the air about banning it during break time.”

Mrs. Peterson elaborated on her reasoning for this compromise and clarified her argument. 

“The thought of allowing students to use their phones during passing periods should be allowed for parental communication reasons, however during class, cell phones should not be allowed due to lack of impact on students’ education.”

Regarding whether or not having cell phones has an influence on students’ education, Mrs. Peterson did not think it did, reasoning that school-issued devices already gave students a similar effect to cellphones. 

“I don’t think it would have any impact on students’ education because you are provided with a device at school.”

— Ms. Peterson

The decision remains unclear—to ban or not to ban? That is the question. 

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Tiffany Armer, Sports Editor
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