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Tuesday, November 21, 2006

More reasons why cell phones and school do not mix

In an article in Kten.com, I saw this story. It involves a student who did not have the disclipline to turn off his cell phone during class, and when it rang during class, the teacher in question acted within his rights and confiscated the cell phone. When his parents got him the cell phone, they should have asked the school what their policy is regarding cell phone use during school hours. That way, he would have known to turn his cell phone off during class. The story is as follows.
Parents Battle School Officials Over Cell Phone

Charges of larceny against two Carter County school officials have been sent to the district attorney's office for consideration of prosecution. Parents of a Lone Grove High School student say the superintendent and the high school principal will not release property that belongs to them. KTEN's Andrea Kurys has the story.

The property in question is a cell phone. The parents say they the phone back, but they were forced to file a complaint after school officials refused return the cell phone.

The cell phone was confiscated from the student last week after it rang in the middle of class. The teacher thought the ringing of the phone interrupted the classwork, and took the phone to the principal's office. When the student's parents went to the school to get it back, they were told it was school policy to hold the phone for five days. The mother of the student, Yvonne Walker, was upset because she says the phone is used in case of an emergency.

"He's 16, he's got a new job and I worry about him on the road," said Walker. "His father worries about him on the road, he's supposed to contact us."

Mr. Walker said, "That's why I got the cell phone for him. For his protection and for him to stay in touch with me and it's not doing him or me a bit of good if the school has it."

Walker says she was treated with disrespect by the principal and the superintendent. She contacted the Lone Grove police department, who sent an officer to the school. Captain Scott Lang said, "I attempted to get the situation resolved, couldn't reach a resolution to it. I ended up having to do a report on it."

That report was sent to the District Attorney's office for consideration of larceny charges against the school officials. The student's parents say the situation could have been resolved much easier.

"I understand that they need to discipline the kids and he was wrong, and he understands that he was wrong and he should be disciplined at home, and we will do that," said Ms. Walker.

"I want the policy changed for any student, any parent," said Mr. Walker. "They should have the right to come pick up their cell phone. The superintendent says he's just following school policy."
If his parents need to contact him during school hours, I am sure that the school has avenues to facilitate that, for emergencies. If it is not an emergency, they could always leave a message on his voice mail. You should read the rest of my blog to see my position on using cell phones while driving a car.


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