By Jamie Murphy
“No cell phones out!” “If I see it, it’s mine,” said no one in SLA ever.
Here in SLA we don’t have a cell phone ban like most other schools. As a result, we don’t have to hide our phones. Remember the ol’ ‘slip your phone in your desk’ trick from middle school? How about hiding it under your lap?
Students that have already been here for some years, almost forget that they’ve ever had to hide their phones.
“I like that we have no cell phone ban, I feel like the school trusts me,” said Junior Lexy Babcock. She also added that “It’s good in case of an emergency.”
For freshman, the change was sudden. Overheard in the SLA halls, a freshman said that “I was just texting that whole period.”
It seems as though at first it’s a struggle to multitask the freedom with their school work. But freshmen eventually adapt.
Other high schools have much stricter policies. At Bodine High School, phones must be off all day. At the Academy at Palumbo, if a phone goes off, it is turned in to the principal’s office.
At SLA, the teachers have different policies, but in general put more responsibility in the hands of students.
In Ms. Echols’ Physics class, “If you wanna use your cell phone and go on iChat, that’s on you. But you will pay in the long run, with quizzes,” said Junior Dalena Bui.
Teachers find the switch to be a pretty good way of having a content school environment. History Teacher Pearl Jonas said, “In previous schools, enforcing a cell phone ban was frustrating. Learning to use cell phones in a healthy way is a life skill for teenagers and adults.”
On the whole, students get used to the freedom quickly — although that’s not always a good thing. In this case, students have adapted to our SLA ways of functioning, which makes our schooling and learning environment very different from others.