Should Students be allowed to use phones in High Schools?

The number of mobile phone users across the globe has increased significantly over just the last few years that includes a large number of younger generation, as well. In most of the schools, phones are not allowed and also most of the people think that it has a lot of disadvantages as it causes a lot of disturbance. However, many of them have policies against students taking their cell phones out of their backpacks during the day or even bringing them to school at all.

According to Education Ministry, it is time to let students bring their devices to the classrooms but there must be regulations to prevent the privilege from being abused but with strict guidelines on usage to prevent issues that could arise from such a move.

“There must be guidelines to ensure that students are disciplined and responsible in their use of smartphones in schools”

Datin Noor Azimah Abdul Rahim (Parent Action Group for Education Malaysia)
Cr: Vector Illustration

She said, online learning should be used to supplement lessons and mobile phones should be encouraged in schools, more so now that students are comfortable with online learning, she added. This is because, as we evolve with technology, there is a need to use mobile phones for education and allowing mobile phones will make it easier for parents to communicate with their children now that schools have reopened. Therefore, the Ministry will have to ensure accessibility for all students including B40 students if a decision is made to allow mobile phones in school.

Although students may misuse their devices and cause distractions during lessons, the devices are beneficial if used to facilitate learning

What are the benefits?

They should be allowed because it can be used for educational related tasks like calculator, searching up information or taking notes when the students forget their notebook. As we all know, mobile phones has calendar apps, clocks, alarms, and reminders that students can use to help them stay more organized. These tools can help them keep track of their homework to make sure they’re not late to class, and plan out their study time efficiently. However, teachers should limit the usage of it, like during lessons and only to use during phones work time. Definitely not during examination time!

We are living in the twenty first century, people have to recognize that we are getting more into technology and getting rid of paper and pencil. Electronics are moving there way into our lives and there’s nothing we can do to stop it. When students are able to use their mobile phones in class, they’ll have access to technology. This can be especially beneficial in classrooms that don’t have enough tablets or computers for each student. Students can use their cell phones to conduct research, answering classroom polling questions, or even type their responses to questions or essays.

Cr: iStock

Next, students should be able to have their cell phones with them in the event there is an emergency at school. This will allow them to contact their parents. Many students walk home alone or stay after school for a club, and may need to get in touch with their parents or emergency services. Without a phone, this won’t be easy.

In addition to using their mobile phones to communicate with their parents and friends, students can also use their cell phones to communicate with their teachers. This can allow students to share feedback and questions with teachers easily and receive answers whenever the teacher has time. If the teacher doesn’t have time to read a student’s question until after the school day, the student could see the reply immediately, rather than waiting until the next day.

Also, many e-books and necessary course materials are available online. If students are able to use access these materials through their phones, it can allow schools to save money by not purchasing materials they otherwise would need to. Teachers can also share many documents digitally and cut down on printing and copying costs. This can teach students in saving money by cutting down on the number of print resources. Students will have a positive impact towards the environment by learning to do less printing, copying, using less paper, ink, power, and other resources.

As a result, these will prepare students for the future. Allowing students to use their cell phone and increase their proficiency with technology can help prepare them for a future career and teaching them proper mobile phone etiquette. For example, students can learn when it is and is not OK to use their phones in different contexts and how to look up to show respect when someone is speaking to them. Without this practice in school, students may not be prepared to interact with their phones and others properly in the future.

Cr: iStock

Ideas How Mobile Phones Can Be Used Effectively in the Classroom

There is a multitude of educational apps out there designed for students of all ages and all subject areas. Choosing a few of these apps to use to give your students extra practice on a skill or target a specific area of need can be quite beneficial. Like Pandai, we equipped our students will all subjects with experienced tutor that can provide them with digital feedback or additional questions to consider.

Teachers can also have the students answer polling questions through their phones to assess their understanding of a given topic. These questions may be written as true/false, multiple-choice, or short answers. There are many different programs and websites that can create quizzes and surveys for your students. Worry not, Pandai has a new feature called Quiz Battle that allow students to battle with their friends and win various rewards!

In short, using technology in class is definitely a yes. There’s so much more you can do when using things like mobile phone and other electronic devices. Sometimes students will be off task but they will still get there work done. 

Over all phones should be allowed in schools for educational reasons

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