×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

UK Schools Consider Searching Pupils' Smartphones

Soulskill posted more than 3 years ago | from the time-for-some-kid-friendly-encryption-services dept.

Education 283

An anonymous reader writes "What right to privacy do school pupils have on their mobile phones? UK education officials are considering ways to clamp down on cyber-bullying and classroom disruption by allowing teachers to search and delete content from student handsets if it is deemed unsuitable. However, questions remain whether such a move would give teachers too much power and infringe on student rights."

cancel ×
This is a preview of your comment

No Comment Title Entered

Anonymous Coward 1 minute ago

No Comment Entered

283 comments

Sigh (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35412814)

The seeds of yet another encroachment on human rights by the UK

Re:Sigh (2, Insightful)

fiannaFailMan (702447) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412918)

The seeds of yet another encroachment on human rights by the UK

Kids are not adults.

I remember when I was about 9 one of my mates drew some caricatures of the teachers in a notebook and passed them around. The teacher noticed us all giggling at it and demanded to see the notebook.

Was that an "encroachment on human rights?"

Re:Sigh (5, Insightful)

SimonTheSoundMan (1012395) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413032)

That was when you were 9. Times have changed.

Scenario 1:
Johnny and Mark gets into a fight after school.
1970 - Crowd gathers. Johnny wins. Johnny and Mark shake hands and end up best mates for life.
2010 - Police called, arrests Johnny and Marko. Charge them with assault, both expelled even though Mark started it. Both children go to anger management programs for 3 months. School board hold meeting to implement bullying prevention programs

Scenario 2:
Robbie won't Keep still in class, disrupts other students.
1970 - Robbie sent to office and given 6 of the best by the headmasterl, Returns to class, sits stil and does not disrupt class again.
2010 - Robbie given huge doses of Ritalin. Becomes a zombie. Tested for ADD. Robbie's parents get fortnightly disability payments and school gets extra funding from state because Robbie has a disability.

Re:Sigh (2)

EvanED (569694) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413126)

Not saying that everything going on today is an improvement but... you have a much-overromanticized version of history.

Re:Sigh (5, Insightful)

fiannaFailMan (702447) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413248)

That was when you were 9. Times have changed.

Scenario 1:
Johnny and Mark gets into a fight after school.
1970 - Crowd gathers. Johnny wins. Johnny and Mark shake hands and end up best mates for life.
2010 - Police called, arrests Johnny and Marko. Charge them with assault, both expelled even though Mark started it. Both children go to anger management programs for 3 months. School board hold meeting to implement bullying prevention programs

That's great. You've been watching The Bells of St Mary's where the bullied kid learns how to box and beats his opponent in a David and Goliath struggle and it all worked out beautifully. Congratulations.

Now here's how it really happened in 1970. Mark picks a fight with Johnny who doesn't want to fight. Mark insists and instead of the good guy winning, Mark kicks the crap out of Johnny anyway. Johnny is left bleeding, bruised, dazed, stunned, crying and traumatised. Johnny goes on to have problems in later life because he was bullied in school.

It wasn't all a bed of roses. God forbid if nostalgia for a non-existent golden age ever forms the basis of policy.

MOD PARENT UP (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35414130)

My kingdom for mod points.

Re:Sigh (5, Insightful)

BradleyUffner (103496) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413058)

The seeds of yet another encroachment on human rights by the UK

Kids are not adults.

It's a good thing they are called "Human Rights", not "Adult Rights" then, isn't it?

Re:Sigh (-1)

fiannaFailMan (702447) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413148)

The seeds of yet another encroachment on human rights by the UK

Kids are not adults.

It's a good thing they are called "Human Rights", not "Adult Rights" then, isn't it?

Ah, another ./ pedant.

Kids do not have the same rights as adults. It's okay to tell kids what to do and force the issue on certain things whether they like it or not. There, happy now?

Re:Sigh (3, Insightful)

X0563511 (793323) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413252)

Maybe in your system of morality. Kindly keep it to yourself, if the only alternative you find is to force it upon others.

Re:Sigh (0)

fiannaFailMan (702447) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413342)

Oh really? So when your kid refuses to eat his oatmeal are you going to "respect his rights not to be force fed" or are you going to teach the little twerp to do what he's told for his own good?

Re:Sigh (1)

Golddess (1361003) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413580)

respect his rights not to be force fed

Yes, actually. It's called "being sent to your room without supper".

Re:Sigh (2)

Obfuscant (592200) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413662)

Yes, actually. It's called "being sent to your room without supper".

1. If you punish someone for doing (or not doing) something, then what they did or didn't do doesn't seem like much of a right to me.

2. And when your precious little one decides not to go to his room, do you respect his rights not to be forced to go to his room? Or do you respect his rights not to be sent to his room the same respectful way you respect his rights not to have to eat oatmeal for supper? In other words, not at all?

"respect his rights not to be force fed" (1)

jeko (179919) | more than 3 years ago | (#35414128)

"or are you going to teach the little twerp to do what he's told for his own good?"

Thanks for that post. Now I've got Pink Floyd's "The Wall" fighting with Buffalo Bill from "Silence of the Lambs" for space on the constant loop in my head.

"It puts the lotion on itself or it gets the hose again YOU! YES YOU! STAND STILL WHILE YOU'RE HIT!"

I really, really hope you're not a parent.

Re:Sigh (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35413130)

kids are however humans still.

Re:Sigh (3, Insightful)

Korin43 (881732) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413278)

kids are however humans still.

Shh! Don't tell anyone. Then we'll have to stop treating them like slaves and idiots (until they suddenly and magically become people at the age of 18 of course).

"Kids are not adults." (4, Insightful)

jeko (179919) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413474)

Absolutely not. Kids are minors, and therefore enjoy greater protection from the law, not less. They still retain basic human rights and many civil liberties. You cannot force a child to work commercially for you for free. You cannot compel a child to testify against themselves. The police may not search children without a warrant. The only reason schools enjoy greater control over their students is by arguing "in loco parentis," that they are literally acting as the child's parent while the mother and father are absent. Even under this doctrine, there are limits. You cannot compel a child to salute the flag or recite the pledge of allegiance. The school may not interfere with a child's practice of religion.

This is all how it should be.

My problem is with the implication of your post. Kids are not adults, so they have no human rights or civil liberties, so we can do what we want to them. The Great State of Texas has been a prime example of this, Kids get investigated as children with no human rights, and then tried as adults with no protections from the law.

And honestly, speaking as a teacher, demanding to see the notebook was a rookie mistake. The problem with you and your friends was that you weren't focused on the lesson. Your teacher should have put you back on task, but instead chose to make this a personal issue between you. Your teacher sacrificed the strong position of "You're not learning the lesson" for the weak position of "You're hurting my feelings."

Look at it this way. Do you remember what you were supposed to be learning that day?

Re:"Kids are not adults." (0)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413564)

You cannot force a child to work commercially for you for free.

Sure you can, if you have kids and own a business you do not have to pay them.

You cannot compel a child to testify against themselves.

Tell that to my parents.

The police may not search children without a warrant.

Why would they need to? They can get the school to do it.

The school may not interfere with a child's practice of religion.

As a person not of the main religion while I was a child in the southern USA, I would say that is the law but not the actual practice.

Re:"Kids are not adults." (2)

xwizbt (513040) | more than 3 years ago | (#35414016)

Grow up. Or one. Whichever.

Imagine what you perceive to be your rights. Imagine they are ascribed to each individual you see around you. Start from that point, and then post further.

Re:"Kids are not adults." (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 3 years ago | (#35414042)

WTF are you talking about?
I am only describing the reality the saw when I was a kid 20 years ago.

Re:Sigh (1)

Golddess (1361003) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413674)

Demanding a notebook that a bunch of students are giggling around, thereby causing a disturbance in the classroom, is not the same thing as stopping a student in the hallway and demanding access to their cellphone.

Here's a better example. A teacher stops a student in the hallway and demands they hand over their backpack. Is this an encroachment on human rights? Some would say yes, some would say no. I'm not here to debate which it is, but at least now we've got a more accurate analogy.

Re:Sigh (1)

Shadow of Eternity (795165) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413794)

The thing is that smartphones by definition nowadays tend to be more of an access point to all their stuff at home. The best example is a teacher decides that a student may be doing something his parents are fine with but the teacher doesn't like so that teacher comes to the kids house, forces the kid to log into everything, and goes through everything from facebook to the kid's private files for something to expel or suspend the kid for.

Re:Sigh (0)

TheGratefulNet (143330) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413998)

yes, and it was training to teach you to FOLLOW ORDERS without question.

the UK really sucks, sorry to say. the US is not far behind but the UK is the most worthless trash of a country in modern 'democracy'.

I sure wish you blokes would re-take your country back. you used to really be something in this world to look up to.

sadly, you are now a laughing stock of what 'fear' is, when gone completely out of control.

Re:Sigh (1)

DarwinSurvivor (1752106) | more than 3 years ago | (#35414060)

Please don't compare a notebook used primarily for school work (that usually gets handed into the teacher on a regular basis anyways) to a phone that is used for everything from surfing the internet, texting your girl/boy friend, talking to your grandparents and storing MANY photos of family/friends.

Schools are not allowed to search your backpack (or locker in most countries) unless public safety is in danger (suspected gun/knife, etc), in which case the POLICE are called in to perform the search.

You don't have to bring your cell phone to schoo; (2)

goombah99 (560566) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413256)

If you bring it to school then the school can impose rules on how you use it. Don't bring it to school if you don't like it. You might as well complain about having to get vaccinated or having to wear pants or leaving your bong at home.

Whatever will the British do? (3, Interesting)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412848)

On the one hand, a proposal to allow teachers to search smartphones is an expansion of the invasive-yet-dubiously-competent surveillance state. Therefore, our limey friends on airstrip one have an obligation to adopt it, it's in their national character or something.

On the other hand, such a proposal will, almost certainly, provide teachers with a supply of kiddie porn, thus abetting the paedophile menace, perhaps the only thing that your average Daily Mail reader fears and loathes more than immigrants on the dole...

How will they decide this one?

Re:Whatever will the British do? (0)

Gordonjcp (186804) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412940)

In the US, you have just as many CCTV cameras in your cities as London does. Your surveillance state keeps you in the sights of some twitchy cop's gun all the time, though. So I guess you have it worse.

I can't imagine a greater infringement of civil liberties than living like the Americans, with a gun pointed at them every second of their lives.

Re:Whatever will the British do? (2)

Microlith (54737) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413092)

In the US, you have just as many CCTV cameras in your cities as London does.

We do? Which cities? What city do I live in that you know this?

I can't imagine a greater infringement of civil liberties than living like the Americans, with a gun pointed at them every second of their lives.

Wait, where's this gun at? Have you ever been here, or are you going on what you see in the movies?

Re:Whatever will the British do? (0)

hedwards (940851) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413198)

I've had a knife at the neck, but never a gun pointed at me. And I've had it comparatively worse than most Americans. You should provide a citation about the cameras because it's not true. The UK has 1 camera for every 14 citizens and we don't have anywhere near that many here. I know the building I used to work security in had only a handful to keep track of a huge amount of space and thousands of people on a daily basis. And we had more than the other buildings in the downtown core.

Re:Whatever will the British do? (2, Insightful)

Gordonjcp (186804) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413350)

The UK has 1 camera for every 14 citizens

That was a figure made up by one of the rabid red-top tabloids - possibly the Daily Mail, I can't quite remember - where they sent one of their "journalists" out to count up all the cameras they could see in about a quarter mile of the main street of a particularly unsavoury part of London, and multiplied by the total length of the road network in the UK. By that metric, the farm track to my house would have three cameras on it - and every road no matter how small would have a camera about every fifty feet.

I live just outside a major city. I doubt if there's a CCTV camera within ten miles of here.

Re:Whatever will the British do? (1)

digitig (1056110) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413378)

The UK has 1 camera for every 14 citizens and we don't have anywhere near that many here.

Don't believe everything you read; that number has long been discredited. It's more like one for every 33 people [dailymail.co.uk] (do the sums yourself). And of course most of it isn't state surveillance; most of the cameras are privately owned and run.

Re:Whatever will the British do? (2)

X0563511 (793323) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413276)

I can't say I agree with either of your points, and that carries some weight - being a native and all. I've lived in the city, suburbs, and country, too - on both coasts and a little bit further in.

That said, even if there was a twitch-ridden gun pointed at me all the time - I take comfort in the fact that I can/do have my own twitchy gun pointing right back at it.

MAD is a pretty strong deterrent.

Re:Whatever will the British do? (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413380)

1. Which cities?
2. At least we can have a gun to point back if the need would ever arise. Note: I do not mean some redneck anti-government civil war fantasy, just that one person could protect himself from another.

Re:Whatever will the British do? (1)

amicusNYCL (1538833) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413418)

I can't imagine a greater infringement of civil liberties than living like the Americans, with a gun pointed at them every second of their lives.

I can't imagine that either, and I'm an American.

(note: there is currently no one pointing a gun at me, nor a cop looking at me, nor a camera recording me)

Re:Whatever will the British do? (2)

Seumas (6865) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413654)

On the other hand, they could just ban cell phones like they did when I was in school in the 90s.

easy and necessary fix. (3, Insightful)

joocemann (1273720) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412854)

No phones. Period.

Re:easy and necessary fix. (0)

kick6 (1081615) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412896)

No phones. Period.

This is the way its done in the States. I'm surprised it isn't universal.

Re:easy and necessary fix. (1)

Microlith (54737) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413166)

Some places give their kids a chance to be responsible. Having grown up in the states, I find that many parents fight hard to keep their children from responsibility until the last possible minute.

Fuck, my school would confiscate CDs, console games, and various other things they had no business taking. Dumb as shit and I still can't find a reason for it.

La la la la, waiting for five minutes to pass so I can participate in the conversation again.. thanks, SLASHDOT, for a five minute delay and HTML that breaks in Firefox on login (hey, when I can I have comment counts on the front page while logged in, Taco?)

Re:easy and necessary fix. (1)

X0563511 (793323) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413300)

Indeed.

They tried that bull on me. They gave my stuff back. Apparently they didn't expect a student to be able to read, understand, and apply policy.

"Take it for the day if you must, but you are NOT taking my property from me, unless you plan on compensating me for it."

Re:easy and necessary fix. (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413408)

They never did have to return it to you, only to your parents. The toys just like yourself were property of your parents.

I am not saying this is right or wrong, only the way it is.

Re:easy and necessary fix. (1)

Jurily (900488) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413782)

Fuck, my school would confiscate CDs, console games, and various other things they had no business taking. Dumb as shit and I still can't find a reason for it.

Modern schools are prisons, not educational facilities. There is no other need for them in the age of Google.

Re:easy and necessary fix. (1)

digitig (1056110) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413424)

It was the policy at my kids' (UK) schools that the the kids couldn't have their phones turned on during the school day, but most had them for the journeys to and from school.

Re:easy and necessary fix. (1)

Master Moose (1243274) | more than 3 years ago | (#35414014)

No phones. Period.

This is the way its done in the States. I'm surprised it isn't universal.

Because in most other countries, it would be: "No Phones. Full-Stop"

Re:easy and necessary fix. (1)

YoshiDan (1834392) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412906)

This is how my school was. All mobile phones were banned. Didn't stop people sneaking them in though and texting each other when the teacher's back was turned.

Re:easy and necessary fix. (1)

hedwards (940851) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413226)

Yes, but then you just take the phone and give it back at the end of the day, or require a parent to come in to collect it. Or at least that's how it used to be done in the schools I went to. No privacy problems since the school doesn't go through the contents of the phone.

Re:easy and necessary fix. (1)

YoshiDan (1834392) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413330)

Our principal used to confiscate sim cards and send them home to the parents in the mail... Not everybody got caught with their phones either.

Re:easy and necessary fix. (2)

pandrijeczko (588093) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413630)

...and that attitude is precisely why old people like me can sit here enjoying our many years of experience and nice salaries, safe in the knowledge that there are no young knowledgeable whippersnappers coming up throught the ranks with an ability to displace us.

Re:easy and necessary fix. (1)

King InuYasha (1159129) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413304)

They can't do that. Many parents rely on students' cell phones as a way to track them (I don't agree with doing this, btw), as well as staying in contact with them when something unexpected happens (I do agree with this, though).

Re:easy and necessary fix. (2)

joocemann (1273720) | more than 3 years ago | (#35414174)

If something unexpected happens, you call the school and they notify the student. This is appropriate for all cases -- i use US History, pre 1999, as an example where this method worked and life moved on.

The problem with the 'if the unexpected' argument is that there is too much abuse and overall distraction in the mix and the overall cost to benefit is that it costs more (loss in quality of education) and does very little to better the lives of people (grandma is dead whether heard over a cellphone or landline in the office).

I'm not saying you shouldn't critically argue, but it is this type of 'lawyer-esque' thinking that keeps big problems IN ACTION. In blunt reality there is no need for cellphones in school.

Re:easy and necessary fix. (1)

vxice (1690200) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413318)

How about no phones during class time period? Do children not have ANY reason to have a phone? It is only when it is used during class time that it interferes. And the phone ringing counts as using. So a confiscate any found phones might keep them off or at least on silent when they can be disruptive but not removing them completely, i.e. no random searches.

Re:easy and necessary fix. (1)

shish (588640) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413666)

My school had a blanket ban on all phones; it worked excellently while I was there, but this was a few years ago -- I wonder if the youth of today are more attached to their phones than we were...

Re:easy and necessary fix. (2)

Darinbob (1142669) | more than 3 years ago | (#35414096)

What do you mean more attached than we were? No one had mobile phones when I was in school. We had walkie-talkies though and I can guarantee you that these were not allowed during class time. If we had an emergency and needed to use a phone, we would go to an office to use one. Humans managed to evolve for thousands of years without phones.

Granted there are some cases where the mobile phone will be even more helpful in emergencies (beaten up and bleeding in the toilet stall and no way to contact a teacher). But DUMB phones are perfectly good for that. No one needs a GPS to find their way around campus, and they absolutely don't need texting or web browsing. What children need to learn in school firstly is to sit down, shut up, listen, and focus. Smart phones are a hindrance to that. Teachers should have every right to confiscate phones that are in use during class and return them later.

Boss key (1)

MrEricSir (398214) | more than 3 years ago | (#35412878)

Games used to have a "boss key" so you could bring up a spreadsheet or something whenever your boss walked by so it looked like you were working.

I see no reason smartphones couldn't have a program that had similar functionality for when a teacher walked by.

Re:Boss key (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35412990)

Perhaps using biometrics to recognize it's owners face with an display-side camera, and show something innocuous when viewed by an unauthorized user? There's money in an app for that...

Re:Boss key (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35414112)

Exactly. Either the phone is yours or it's not. If it's yours, then it would be silly for someone else to believe what the phone tell them about its contents. You can log into my fileserver as guest, but that doesn't mean you see all the files.

In Other News (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35412886)

Britain sucks. Who would want to live in that festering dump where you're monitored at every turn? The citizens are just too stupid to realize they are already living in V for Vendetta.

Re:In Other News (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35413002)

They're probably so stupid because they were reading comic books instead of novels such as 1984.

Isn't it considered pederasty? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35412950)

Reason I didn't date anyone when I was under 21 is because I thought the pederasts were all the 5th graders proto-sexually attracted to other 5th graders. When I was growing-up, I only looked at mother material: the 30 y/o women with breasts, the MILFS; the cougars too.

I'm not a pederast, as you can read, and I assure you that anyone dating through grade school Elementary through Junior High and High School to be the prime pederasty suspects. They have technology for that young age to store pictures of their fellow young "dates" that the raping pederasts in School administration functions will be looking for. Think about it: Rape-Pederasts vs Young de-jure loving Pederasts. Anyone that receives trauma from a failed relationship in those younger years will constantly be looking for other "girls" at that age they were found to be attractive.

Case in Point: 4Chan...

Yes, I'm saying School administrators = pederast (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35413114)

Just emphasizing my point, that the pederasts tend to flock to jobsites to get their fill. You really should wonder how someone who has never had a job outside of Teaching others how to get a job or make a living, would ever have qualities to pass-on to young flowering students. It's because they are drawn back to the young age of their lives when they were in school: they "teacher" that perhaps touched their heart and mind in more ways than one is simply assuring more eager applications to continue that long tradition of Teaching.

I've seen learning materials from 8th grade prior to the 1900's and it is superior to the first instances of Collegiate-level. What are these Teachers doing, or do they only teach the material prepared for them from some paper-corporation that makes a living slugging the econonmy with careers of questionable demand as to manipulate the value of labor for industries that are not welcoming government regulation? I've been in computer repair and electronics repair fields, all self taught while associating with fellow competitors at conventions, and we all felt both those industries start to suck ever since about 1999 when government Teachers starting pushing Engineering credentials through Peer school club-indoctrination of the "career path." Nothing helpful came of it, and all the American fabricators of components are mostly overseas where teaching-loans can't be payed-off if you ever emigrated to work at one.

Great comparison about shift in demographics of Chinese influx to America is http://savingtosuitorsclub.net/content.php?133-America-Or-A-China-Ca&s=eaf8b4ab069e6f5465c66360b245cbf3 [savingtosuitorsclub.net]

Unacceptable (0)

omb (759389) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413080)

If, when I and my children lived in the UK, a teacher had tried to do this I would have sued s/his ass off. Now
I would insert the barrel of my SIG 210 up their left nostril and politely ask them NOT to do it again.

What do those people think they are?

They can insist that the phone be made silent and pupils do not initiate calls

Re:Unacceptable (1)

Dr. Evil (3501) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413176)

Until somebody shoves a camera under the cubicle wall and takes a picture of your son or daughter with their pants down. Then when the other students say "but I don't have a picture, do you have a picture?" and the teacher is powerless to do anything, the photo will be recirculated for years.

Crimes take place in schools which would never be tolerated in the outside world.

Re:Unacceptable (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35413298)

There's a difference between deleting something specific on a phone if someone reports it and looking through everything on everyone's phone. In either case, the kids would probably have it online by the time it gets deleted off the phone though...

Re:Unacceptable (1)

X0563511 (793323) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413322)

What kind of fucked up "school" has cubicles? That's a great way to foster teamwork...

Re:Unacceptable (0)

Obfuscant (592200) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413582)

What kind of fucked up "school" has cubicles? That's a great way to foster teamwork...

What kind of fucked up school fosters teamwork in the bathroom? Or did you really think the OP was talking about students having their pants down in cubicles like the ones in Dilbert's office? What a howler.... PHB and Dilbert comparing wankers on the job?

Re:Unacceptable (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35413596)

What kind of fucked up "school" has cubicles? That's a great way to foster teamwork...

Teamwork in the toilets? I think your school was more fucked up than his!

Re:Unacceptable (2)

Call Me Black Cloud (616282) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413344)

If, when I and my children lived in the UK, a teacher had tried to do this I would have sued s/his ass off.

What's a "shis"?

Now I would insert the barrel of my SIG 210 up their left nostril and politely ask them NOT to do it again.

Overreact much? Funny, I thought the barrel of the SIG P210 was far larger than any nostril, well, except maybe this guy's: http://www.thesun.co.uk/sol/homepage/news/article112380.ece [thesun.co.uk]

What do those people think they are?

Educators of children? Hopefully they're doing a better job than those that educated you, judging from your entertaining comment history. A connoisseur of transsexuals, are you? Italy has "some of the most passable/beautiful TS outside asia". Awesome. Maybe you could publish a field guide to the world's she-males.

Re:Unacceptable (3, Insightful)

digitig (1056110) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413476)

If, when I and my children lived in the UK, a teacher had tried to do this I would have sued s/his ass off.

Under what law?

Re:Unacceptable (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35413612)

You would sue? Good luck with that in a British court!

Re:Unacceptable (1)

Duradin (1261418) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413688)

Who do you think you are using deadly force willy-nilly?

You're the sort that gives CCP holders a bad reputation.

apologists (5, Insightful)

epyT-R (613989) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413102)

I'm sure there'll be plenty of apologists here who will say

1. "I'm old and I don't like that young people have better times ahead of them so I am happy to hear about them being clamped down in some way."
2. the legal apologist who says if the law allows/denies it, it must be ok/not ok. who cares that we're discussing, at least obliquely, the effects of this scenario that it creates.
3. "when I was a kid" douchebags.
4. the wannabe tyrant who props up his insecurities by always siding with big brother tyrants.

How about just throwing out the kids who are disruptive in class? this way no property has to be ruined, no lawsuits filed, and the kids who want to be there to learn (or at least graduate) can do so. if it's the kind of thing where the kid's sitting there quietly with headphones on, leave him alone.. he's not bothering anyone else. the only reason teachers throw these kinds of 'offenders' out is because of their insecure feelings of being 'dissed.' Really, it's not necessary because the kid will fail the class...or pass it because he already knew the material. Remind him that paying attention is important and he'll need to take off the 'phones to do that. if he says 'no' just say 'remember there's a test next week, I hope you'll be prepared.' and leave it at that. if the kid keeps forgetting to turn off his cell phone ringer, then throw him out of the class until he starts remembering. none of this requires a panopticonic policy. of course such policies have a benefit for the emotional security challenged people out there who are more often than not in-charge.

The 'cyber bullying 'excuse for this new 'power' is just another form of 'for the children.' searching/confiscating phones and deleting files on them is not going to stop bullying.. in fact, all this will do is enable yet another way for faculty to bully students.

Re:apologists (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35413416)

if it's the kind of thing where the kid's sitting there quietly with headphones on, leave him alone.. he's not bothering anyone else. the only reason teachers throw these kinds of 'offenders' out is because of their insecure feelings of being 'dissed.'

I'm pretty sure most of the time the teacher or professor doesn't like that because they're worried about their class's average performance, assuming it will be used to gauge THEIR performance as a teacher. (And thus affect their salary and job security.)

Re:apologists (1)

epyT-R (613989) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413644)

If the teacher's doing his job, the kid is playing with his phone or whatever because he knows the material and is bored. if he's one of two or three who hasn't mastered it, then the class average is safe.. if lots of kids, attentive or not, are having trouble passing, then that suggests a bad teacher who should not have the right to take his fear of losing employment out on the students. keeping the kid in class when he's being disruptive will drop the average for the class. letting a non attentive but non disruptive kid stay in class is ok because it gives him the chance to change his ways if he's failing, and/or pick up bits of knowledge he didn't realize he didn't know about the subject if he's passing.

Re:apologists (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35413422)

/sigh

1. Throwing out the students that are not learning will not help them learn.
2. I have known of many that would purposefully do such things if they could get out of the eye of the teacher.
3. It is rare enough to find someone with a headset or ear buds that is quiet enough to not be heard while in a quiet environment like a classroom.
4. A simple turning off or proper silencing (not vibrate) of a phone is good enough. If there is an emergency, schools can be contacted and usually are.
5. Having kids fail classes because they want to is becoming less and less possible due to dumbing down of materials. There are plenty of articles like the recently posted on about teaching "non-factual" sciences.
6. If a student is causing problems, the best way is to embarrass them so that they do not want to do it again. Maybe call on that student to solve a variety of problems on the board, with a short and direct insult if they refuse to rile them up. -- Can cause problems with certain personalities though. This is also frowned upon by many districts in the States.
7. My list is longer than yours, even if it only has a stream of conscientiousness listing.

Re:apologists (2)

Mr. Freeman (933986) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413684)

"1. Throwing out the students that are not learning will not help them learn."

Explain to me how on earth confiscating property will help them learn. Confiscating their cell phone, mp3 player, etc. doesn't help the student to learn, it just removes whatever distraction they were using. Once that's gone they'll either find something else to distract them or they'll start bothering other students because they're bored. I would much prefer that a student sits in class and listens to their ipod or reads a book or text messages on their cell phone rather than try to talk to other students in the middle of a lecture because they're bored. Another pastime for bored students that have nothing to distract them at their desk is to disrupt the lecture by asking intentionally stupid questions or making a ruckus.

Re:apologists (1)

epyT-R (613989) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413854)

also, taking their property creates a defiant relationship between the teacher and student.. what good does that do? anger over the conflict does not put one in a learning mood, especially when the teacher is the target of the anger. really, the colleges (at least the ones that don't treat students like junior high schoolers) have this right. do what you want, but disrupt the class and you're out. it's your grade.

Re:apologists (1)

epyT-R (613989) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413790)

1. kids who don't want to learn can't be forced to. if the kid's being disruptive AND not paying attention, he should be thrown out for the period.
2. so? we should make a rule against something for the sole reason that many would do it?
3. then the behavior is disruptive. "your phones are too loud.. turn them down or get out" I"m talking about nondisruptive behavior.
4. like the headphones example, it's not about the device or its capabilities. it's about whether the student's behavior is disruptive to other students. the teacher's ego is irrelevant. he's got the grade book. if the kid hasn't mastered the material, then fail him. that's a fair punishment. if he knows the material, then there's no reason for the teacher to be upset.
5. and so....? most of the problems in school are due to obsessive compulsive control freakery on the part of the faculty. in the old days, we just threw the disruptives out of class until they shaped up or dropped out.
6. fine..call him up to the board.. he'll walk up there and either demonstrate his mastery before sitting back down to his game of whatever on his phone, or he'll demonstrate he's failing to the whole class. if he cares about his classmates' opinions he 'might' be motivated to change. usually, bad performance isn't solely due to simple laziness, and kids in that situation have usually quit caring about what others think of their performance long ago. insults from the teacher will just make him even less interested in the class.
7. yah.. the irony is that most authority figures can't muster up any justification for the rules they set except for "mine is bigger/stronger than yours"

anyway this article was about stopping 'bullying.' it's really just another 'for the children' argument to satiate micromanagement types.

Re:apologists (2)

elewton (1743958) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413544)

While I agree with the tone of your post, teachers are being paid to do a job, and their students' performances effect a teacher's career.

Many students will go through periods of non-cooperation for very valid reasons, but the economic ramifications of allowing them to doss are potentially significant.
Maybe educational reform would allow students who have zero interest in public school eduction to engage in learning more suitable to their needs, but no one is currently incentivised to allow slackness.

Re:apologists (1)

digsbo (1292334) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413746)

Slightly off-topic, but where are you that student performance has a significant effect on a teacher's career? As far as I know, student performance is forbidden from being used as any kind of "metric" to gauge teacher performance by the unions in every place I've heard of in the USA.

Re:apologists (1)

epyT-R (613989) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413830)

the students are not responsible for the teacher's well-being, nor should they be. the teacher is being paid under the assumption he knows how to teach. part of that is keeping their interest. if the teacher can't do this, he has failed. if a few kids are non-intrusively not paying attention, whether it's related to phone use or not, he's ok. those kids will pass or fail. if the whole class is failing, that's the teacher's fault.

Re:apologists (1)

Stormthirst (66538) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413836)

What you're talking about is banning phones in class so that they don't text or phone each other, or so they can listen to music - which they shouldn't be doing anyway. They're in class and should be there to learn not socialise.

What the article is about is kids taking humiliating photos and distributing them around the school - and teachers having the power to search the phones and remove content that could be used to bully people.

So while you're talking about apologists in their various forms, you're turning a blind eye and are allowing (and in my eyes, therefore condoning) bullying in school. You make an excuse by say "Well, they'll have to get used to being bullied in the real world". I can say without a shadow of a doubt, that bullying in school is *nothing* like bullying in the real world. I've been subjected to both, and I can assure you that it's far far worse in school. Or worse you'll argue that bullying is "character forming" - what a crock!

Sure, taking content off phones isn't going to stop bullying from happening. After all, if it's on one phone, it's probably on many. But at least the teacher could give the parents a heads up as to what is happening in their child's life.

As far as I'm concerned - you are the apologist. You are condoning bullying in school. And you then have the audacity to suggest that the teachers are the bullies?

Re:apologists (1)

epyT-R (613989) | more than 3 years ago | (#35414038)

So while you're talking about apologists in their various forms, you're turning a blind eye and are allowing (and in my eyes, therefore condoning) bullying in school.

false dilemma. no i did not condone anything in my post. yes I know what the article is about. in fact, I argued that overreaching faculty in itself is a form of bullying. adding more to the pot doesn't teach anything but that it's acceptable once you have enough authority. some of the worst bullying comes not from the other students, but from the faculty who set the stage for the crap that happens in the hallways/schoolyards later. humiliate a kid in class a few times, and watch how the other students jump on the bandwagon. one instance in class can last for weeks worth of torment from the others. the teachers have the power and set the stage..

As far as I'm concerned - you are the apologist. You are condoning bullying in school. And you then have the audacity to suggest that the teachers are the bullies?

no I am not. you reason like a politician. the teachers can ALSO be the bullies, and the power this article talks about would help that along. Yes you do need to get used to some bullying. welcome to the real world. what we should be teaching kids is how to stand up for themselves..with eloquent reason that shatters the fallacies of those around them, as well as self-defense skill for those lunkheads who are immune to reason and only understand the fist. This simpering passive-aggressive 'politically-correct' nonsense that tolerates no expression whatsoever is why kids today bottle everything up and then explode later.

Re:apologists (1)

Darinbob (1142669) | more than 3 years ago | (#35414102)

When I was a kid our douchebags didn't connect to the internet to update their status every time you used one.

Anyone remember FakeReset on TI? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35413118)

This will work great... I remember classes that let us use graphing calculators--the teacher would reset them before a test.

So first thing geeks would do is install a program with a fake reset button. Later classes presumably flashed with a firmware with a fake reset once the TI signing key got cracked...

It wasn't that I wanted to cheat in precalc--I just didn't want to lose my mario brothers game for after class...

"Sorry, nothing on my phone but a text from Mom..."

May as well teach kids to subvert authority as young as possible after all...

Load this app up on a hotkey press during school hours...problem solved.

Although, this does bring up an issue near to my heart--why doesn't android have ANY useful encryption yet?

No cell phones in the New York City public schools (1)

slonik (108174) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413178)

NYC department of education found an ultimate solution. All electronic gadgets sans HP calculators are banned in the public schools.

Re:No cell phones in the New York City public scho (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35413900)

How much did HP pay for that one?

Huh? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35413188)

And this is different from the States, how?

Questions remain? (1)

Mr. Freeman (933986) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413540)

"questions remain whether such a move would give teachers too much power and infringe on student rights."

That's like saying "questions remain whether Hitler was a bad guy" or "questions remain whether giving the police the authority to search houses without a warrant would give the police too much power".
There's isn't any question here. Of course allowing teachers to search and delete whatever they want from a student's cell phone is an abuse of power. Just like allowing teachers to search and erase content from a student's notebook or to take a student's books and burn them.

search, ok. delete? No. (1)

johncandale (1430587) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413562)

A few of the problems is smart phones are more like computers. you can hide files, you can encrypt files, etc. Sorry I don't trust teachers to know every phone OS and os hack (kids love hacks) on every new phone coming out every 6 months. I think they should just take them away for the day on first offense. Offense meaning being seen. Second offense they should be banned from having them on their person

Here's a revolutionary thought... (1)

jaskelling (1927116) | more than 3 years ago | (#35413732)

How about all the school teachers and admin folk just worry about TEACHING? The only difference between this search & delete against the students' will and an actual cyberbully is that you're doing it there and in person and telling them they have no choice. Way to go rolemodels!
Load More Comments
Slashdot Account

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Don't worry, we never post anything without your permission.

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>
Sign up for Slashdot Newsletters
Create a Slashdot Account

Loading...