New policy limits phone usage in classrooms

Anna Crockett, Staff Reporter

After a year of having unparalleled access to an immediate internet connection, many students and teachers have found the transition back to a limited virtual world complicated. 

This semester, the “no phone policy” has been revised, similar to pre-pandemic times but with fewer rules. 

“Teachers were concerned they [phones] were taking away from learning,” said Principal Bill Beando. “They [phones] were continuously becoming a class disruption.”

From an upperclassmen perspective, the phone policy has changed drastically. Previously, detentions had been handed out for texting at lunch, whereas now phones can be out in the cafeteria as well as in the hallways during passing time. 

“We used to take the students’ phones, but that’s not something we wanted to do anymore,” said Beando. “We understood the frustration of the students at the time and wanted to continue to respect that now.” 

Newer restrictions emphasized the teachers’ and administration’s goals to limit the use of phones, rather than completely eliminating them. 

“Students’ phones should be a communicative device rather than one for entertainment,” said math teacher Jennifer Collard.

Junior Gabriela Hamburger Medailleu agreed.

“I think that good teachers always had a certain level of respect towards their students, meaning they would allow them to check their phones responsibly and if necessary,” she said. 

Some students have reported that they felt no difference in the classroom from semester one to semester two.

“None of my teachers are really enforcing the no-phone rule, so I haven’t really noticed a difference,” said senior Rosemary Luddy. “Honestly, if they completely got rid of the phones, I wouldn’t have cared.” 

Many students said they agree with the administration’s decision to allow teachers to regulate the usage of phones in class. 

“I think that the phone policy should be enforced differently depending on the policy of that teacher,” said junior Kaci Anderson. 

Beando said he believes that most Mountaineers make good choices.   

“The overwhelming majority of students do the right thing,” said Beando. “The rules aren’t made for the good students.”