Life for students at Helena High School changed last week as they were given permission to be able to use new and old cell phones in the school building, a move that puts the school into step with its cross-town rival Capital High School as well as a number of smaller schools, which are situated in the region.
The change acknowledges the reality that the lives of teenagers are deeply intertwined with technology and that efforts to ban the use of cell phones are an exercise in futility. Students spurred on the change at Helena High School, with Quinn Collins and Tom Lund writing to administrators to discuss the possibility of talks about a change in policy. In February, a committee of administrators, students and teachers formed to look at the possibility of rewriting the cell phone policy, with a new rule having now been introduced which allows the use of cell phones in the classroom for educational reasons, as well as in other places in the school, with the exception of locker rooms.
Collins notes that the former rule, which only allowed use of the devices after school and outside the building, was outdated. “We have computers in our pockets and we should be able to use them,” he notes. “And our normal conversations are over the phone through texting.” Lund noted that students were still using cell phones regardless anyway, with the former rule just forcing them do so in a sneaky manner.