To ban or not to ban? That is the question.
Time’s change. We should never lose sight of that.
It is always dangerous to apply current principles to things without looking forward.
Should we ban social media because of the impact it might have on our children?
Of should we teach them about how to use it properly and responsibly?
Would we be better about teaching them about the impacts of cyber bullying, how not to be a bully and what action to take if you are being bullied?
History is littered with things we banned because we once thought they were not appropriate.
There is a lot of debate currently about smart phones in schools and whether they should be banned.
Associate Professor Sarah Howard from the University of Wollongong’s School of Education, shares a different viewpoint.
“I see them as just another digital technology but quite a useful one for a number of reasons. To me they are an important part of the classroom,” Professor Howard said.
“Mobile phones are another digital technology that students have available to them that can be used in learning. I think that is a good thing.
“They are cheap, they are mobile, they're easy and they are a really flexible device.”
Professor Howard suggests that instead of banning smart phones in schools we’d be better off educating children that there is an appropriate time and and appropriate way to use them.
In late June this year, the NSW government announced a review of the use of smartphones in schools.
The psychologist heading the review, Michael Carr-Gregg, said tackling predators and cyber bullying was the review’s priority.
The question we need to answer is: Would banning the use of smart phones in schools solve the issue of bullying?
Or would a better approach be to actually teach the kids how to behave with them?
The latter sounds like a far more proactive and sensible response.