Cellphones Are a Distraction in the Classroom

Elisabeth Kolb, Student Writer

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Every day, our phones go off with a multitude of notifications: text messages, social media, games, and reminders. But our phones should not interfere with our education. We believe that cellphones are a distraction and should not be allowed in a classroom.

According to Pew Research Center, 95% of 13-17 year olds either have smartphones or have access to smartphones. Further research has been tracking the correlation between this cell phone used and negative academic, social-emotional, and mental health outcomes. 

Many people will argue that cell phones can be used for educational purposes such as internet, research, useful apps, and organizing schoolwork; but at what cost? Smartphones cannot be monitored in the same way as things such as school laptops, so there’s no complete way of knowing that a student is using their phone for only school purposes. 

There are a few positives to student phone use, however. Students are able to communicate with parents and others in the case of emergency, and teachers are theoretically able to devote more time to teaching if students are fully allowed to have cell phones. The belief is that by allowing phones, the teacher won’t need to discipline cell phone distraction, though it still poses the distraction itself.

The solution is simple: phone collection. Allow students to have phones in the hallways, but at the start of class, phones are turned in to help take part in attendance. This makes smartphones still available as a tool for communication and learning if the teacher requests it, but also takes away the rest of the distraction. 

Cell phones are going to be distractions as long as we allow them to be. Removing them from having the potential to distract would allow for more time spent learning, growing, and focusing on education.