I got an email the today from our school district. It’s the fifth one since yesterday! A bit ridiculous if you ask me. Among the emails was one reminding me to “have my student sign up for a new app so that they can keep up to date with assignment reminders.”
Seriously?! There’s an app for that?!
I see several things wrong with this idea.
The first is that the school district is assuming EVERY STUDENT has a cell phone. My eighth grader does not! It’s a family decision as well as a financial one. A cell phone should be a luxury. In our house, you need to earn that privilege, as well as figure out a way to pay for it yourself. I know, we could be the last ones who feel this way, but that’s the way it is. I’m trying to teach them something about responsibility.
It’s ludicrous for the school district to warn parents that their children may be addicted to technology and then, in the next breath, tell us we need to provide that technology to get their assignments! Am I the only one that sees the hypocrisy?
The second thing wrong with this is that it opens a line of “private communication” between my student and their teacher. I’m not so sure I’m comfortable with that. I’d like to think that every teacher has been properly screened before being hired, but weird things happen all the time. Also, I’m not entirely sure I’m comfortable with my child texting with any adult…unless it’s a family member.
The third thing, and here’s the most logical argument: every generation before this one has managed to get their assignments and keep track of them…wait for it…WITHOUT A CELL PHONE! We are hindering this generation from exercising their brains, and from using very crucial organizational and time management skills that will benefit them in the future!
Way back in the 1980s, we had to remember our assignments. And get this: if we forgot, then we didn’t get credit, therefore causing a chain reaction where WE MADE SURE WE REMEMBERED THE NEXT TIME! The world didn’t come to a screeching halt, nobody went into a panic attack, and NO PARENTS COMPLAINED TO THE SCHOOL because they knew it was their own kid’s fault. They LEARNED to not do that again.
Don’t misunderstand me. I believe there are certain circumstances where technology like this may be necessary. But generally, that’s when a special program has been worked out for individual students who need the extra help.
I also understand that communication between parents and school staff such as counselors, teachers, disciplinarians, etc. can be very useful with texts and email. But it shouldn’t be a work-around for every student.
We are creating young adults who don’t plan ahead, who don’t know how to manage their time, who have forgotten how to write notes and then remember to look at those notes. WE AREN’T HELPING THEM by keeping them tethered to their cell phones, if they’re fortunate enough to have them.
Where does this madness stop? How young is too young to have a cell phone? Sorry for the rant…I just couldn’t keep my mouth shut about this.