Cell phones are literally everywhere. And there is no denying that these magical devices have made it much easier to access information and connect with people. However, some believe that cell phones and smart phones do not belong in every part of our lives. Churches, theaters and many different businesses ask patrons to voluntarily turn off their phones. Some facilities have gone so far as to install signal blocking devices to prevent cell phones from working.
But what about cell phones in schools? Should kids be allowed to carry and use cell phones in the classroom? There are arguments both for and against.
On the positive side: Parents claim that they have a right/need to reach their children in case of an emergency.
Against: Distracted students, cheating and privacy issues
The current policy in New York City’s public school system prohibits students to bring cell phones into schools. This has sparked considerable debate. The policy has also inspired a cottage industry that holds and charges phones for students while they are in class.
NYC’s controversial Mayor Michael Bloomberg has been a vocal critic of allowing kids access to cell phones and smart phones in the classroom for years. This week, Bloomberg came up with a new reason to prevent students from bringing phones into schools. Porn.
That’s right: Bloomberg is worried that kids in school will use their smartphones as “smut phones” and view pornography. Oddly, based on Bloomberg’s statement about porn potential, he appears to be more concerned about the city’s liability than he is about the students:
“You have a big liability with pornography. The city would get sued right away.”
Many writers who have covered this story seem to be confused as to how New York City might face liability if a student uses their cell phone to transmit pornography during school hours. The answer is a simple, three-word Latin phrase: “In loco parentis.” Meaning, while a students is in the care of the school system, the school can and should act as a parent would. Considering that the role and goal of a school is to educate all of the students, if the actions of one student prevents the others from learning, the school has an obligation to act.
Where do you stand on the topic? Take our Blaze poll and add a question of your own: