An Educational Pitfall

I have been an educator for twelve years. I am dedicated to my craft, my school, and my city. I study my craft relentlessly, day in and day out.

I have observed everything around me – looking for details and fine points that will allow me to take students to another level.

I have observed everything around me – looking for potential pitfalls that prohibit students from advancing and fulfilling their potential.

I have found a pitfall.

In the decade I have been inside schools, I have never witnessed a pitfall as deep and dangerous as the cell phone. I am not alone. Steve Gardiner, a National Board Certified Educator and columnist for Education Week, states:

“In a career that spans thirty-eight years, I have not seen any single diversion that so distracts students from reading, writing, and working – as the cell phone.” (Education Week, May 2016)

“…We provide help to people who can’t control their behavior related to gambling, sex, drugs, and alcohol. But, we have no programs to help teenagers who can’t live two minutes without seeing their phones.” (Education Week, May 2016)

“…Students are using their cellphones 24/7. They sleep with them by their beds and text each other throughout the night. My students are addicts.” (Education Week, May 2016)

“…Yes, addict is a strong word, but physically, mentally, and emotionally, a high percentage of teenagers are addicted to their cell phones. We have incentives to promote attendance and graduation, but many teenagers need help, because their bodies are in the classroom, but their minds are inside their cellphones.” (Education Week, May 2016)

I have found a pitfall.

 

Maurice Guest Jr., is an education administrator in Little Rock, Arkansas.

 

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