Hands off my phone

Taking phones away is not the solution

Suad Mohamed, Editorials Editor

As teenagers, sometimes we make a mistake that upset our parents. Whether it is slipping grades or not doing chores, everyone has been in the hot seat at some point.

But is taking phones away the solutions to these problems? Signs point to no.

Just a few years ago, cell phones were really only used for making quick phone calls. Phone use was limited by quotas on how many minutes, texts, and data each plan had.

Nowadays, most cell phone plans are unlimited, plus phones are smarter, prompting people to use them more and for a variety of different things.

The typical student depends on phones when it comes to school. Most are in group chats with fellow peers to discuss homework assignments.

Thanks to apps like Remind and Google Classroom, teachers can also send reminders about upcoming homework assignments, quizzes, and tests.

With the StudentVUE app, students are able to check their grades in SIS at any time.

There are even classroom activities that are best completed with phones, such as Kahoot.

If their phone is taken away, how can a student who is used to these circumstances be expected to keep up with school? It will be hard for them to do well.

Cell phones make school easier, and all students should be able to take advantage of that.

Most teenagers have a lot of responsibilities that keep them out of the house. They have to attend sports practices, stay after school for clubs and activities, get volunteering hours, work, study at the library plus and more.

How are parents supposed to keep track of their children without a cell phone? There isn’t any efficient way to do it.

Phones provide a safety net for teenagers who are out, and keep parents at ease. When teenagers have their phones, they are one click away from contacting their parents in case of an emergency or to alert them about a change in their plans.

In this day and age, most teens are connected with their friends through their phones. Social media apps like Instagram and Snapchat are slowly replacing hanging out with friends face-to-face.

While most adults see this as a bad thing and believe that it has putting a hamper on social interaction, it is actually quite beneficial.

Sometimes, people who have anxiety in social settings are able to speak freely to peers through their phones. Friends who live far away from each other can connect online, instead of having to organize plans that can be hard to actually commit to. Those who don’t have many friends at school or other social settings can click with people online.

But when phones are taken, all of these bonds are broken. There is no way for teens to communicate with these people once their phones have been taken away.

There is no one for them to speak to and get advice from, because parents have cut off the route to get there.

“It is very stressful and difficult for me when my mom takes my phone away,” sophomore Brenda Huamani said. “A majority of my friends go to a different school, so I don’t see them often. So when my mom takes my phone away, that means she’s also taking away my access to friends fro a few weeks.”

Taking phones away often times causes trust issues.

Teens who have had phones taken will probably find a way to access social media again.

These attempts can range from borrowing a friend’s old phone or sneaking their phone back.

These options also defeat the whole purpose of taking the phone away in the first place

Taking phones away can also cause parents to break trust, too. The temptation to look through their children’s phone is most of the time too hard for parents to hold back.

In both situations, the other party will probably find out and be extremely upset. Once the trust between a child and parent is broken, it can be hard to build back up again.

To summarize, taking phones away isn’t a solution to problems. Instead, it is a catalyst for new ones.

Instead of taking phones away, parents should look for other options. Most of the time, simply talking to teens can help diffuse the situation.

Teenagers need phones for a multitude of reasons and taking them away should not be the answer to solve misbehavior.