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The Student News Site of Fresno Christian High School

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The Student News Site of Fresno Christian High School

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Cell phone rules instigate controversy

As the teacher passed out the exam, the students anxiously ran over the material in their minds. Cautiously they began to fill in the Scantron sheets, hoping they’d studied enough. The room was completely quiet until the silence was rudely broken by the sound of Britney Spears’ voice singing, “Womanizer, womanizer, womanizer, baby.” Someone’s cell phone was going off.

Surely every student has experienced the disruption of a cell phone at least once during their years of being in class. While most agree that cell phones can be a huge disturbance, opinions on restrictions vary.

For campus teachers and staff, cell phone disruptions are beyond annoying. So frustrated were the teachers and staff by cellular disturbances, several years ago administration outlawed all cell phones in the building between the hours of eight and three, even during lunches and breaks. However, they quickly reverted back to the rules of not allowing cell phone usage in the buildings.

On the morning of Oct. 22, I got a text from my nanny regarding my after-school pickup time. I walked into my class and silently texted her backwith my phone in my backpack.

Unfortunately, after I had finished my message, my teacher approached me and announced that he had seen me texting in my backpack. He demanded I forfeit my phone. I felt extremely humiliated and frustrated that I did not have a chance to tell my side of the story.

I put the phone on his desk. Little did I know, a talk with Molly Sargent, vice principal, would follow.

Sargent was kind in her reprimand of my behavior, despite my embarrassment. She firmly let me know that, regardless of the situation, I was not to be texting in class. If I needed to communicate with an outside source, she said, I should ask for the teacher’s permission to take my cell phone outside.

She also warned me that, should my phone be taken away again, my parents would be required to pick up my phone. I walked out of Sargent’s office content with the way the short meeting had gone.

While teachers may feel confident that the cell phone rules help the school function well, many students, including myself, feel frustrated by the guidelines. Some wonder why cell phones are banned during special circumstances, such as family emergencies. Yet teachers are stringent in the enforcement of the rules.

Unfortunately, some teachers are so steadfast that they even come across as uncaring. Sometimes students honestly forget to turn off their phones and teachers’ responses may be misconstrued as only punitive.

Some students also feel as though teachers are hypocritical in their behaviors because occasionally a teacher’s cell phone may ring during class. Students should not be criticized and condemned for accidental behaviors when their instructors break the rules.

Nonetheless, whether one deems cell phones necessary or disruptive, the administration creates use policies and as students we should follow these rules to the best of our abilities.

For more information on cell phone rules, read the May 6 New law stalls drivers’ conversations.

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