The best option I know to manage the proliferation of cell phones in schools is blocking calls and texts within the building. Like metal detectors, I’d be willing to invest in the technology. It’s desperately needed.
Eduhonesty: Many poor school districts simply don’t have the money for new technology. In those districts, we have to go to Plan B. Parents, please try to track what your children are doing on their phones. How much phone time is being used during the school day? If it’s much more than the length of a student lunch, learning will be compromised. Depending on the situation, consider keeping the phone at home during the school day. The school will call in any emergency. For that matter, friends can lend phones in an emergency as well. America has no shortage of phones!
A minute here, a minute there, and pretty soon we are talking whole days of learning lost. If state test scores are stagnant, I submit that phone minutes alone might be enough to account for our lack of progress. We bleed educational minutes. Cell phones are not among the smallest of our wounds.