Liberty adopts optional cell phone hotel policy

Kaitlyn Keyes, Photography Editor

Hold onto your textbooks and say sayonara to your cell phones! For years now, teachers have borne witness to the rise of cell phones as they have distracted students one at a time. Now, they think that they have found the solution.
“Recently, the administration has purchased cell phone caddies for every classroom which will serve as a localized place that students can keep their phones during class so that they’re out of reach,” math teacher Andy Hall said.
The hope behind these new “cell phone hotels” is simple: take away the opportunity and thus eliminate the problem. Without the buzz in their pocket to remind them, the administration hopes that students will be able to focus better on their classwork.
“I know that when I’m trying to do homework or classwork and my phone buzzes, I am immediately distracted. I can’t sit still: I need to figure out what the notification is for,” junior Allyson Mangus said.
The administration also hopes that cell phone hotels will also prove to increase better, more impactful social interaction among students.
“It’s obvious that cell phones have proven to be a problem in terms of distraction and social interaction between students,” French teacher Nadège Maciel said. “Implementing this policy will hopefully be beneficial to this social aspect of school.”
This strategy of phone control is not entirely new to Liberty. In the past, many teachers have instituted similar policies to stem the tide of cellphone usage during classes.
“I instituted my cell phone policy in fall of 2018,” health teacher Donna Abbey said. “It has enabled students to better learn the curriculum information necessary to be successful during class time.”
For now, these “cellphone hotels,” are only an optional policy that teachers can choose whether to enforce. Teachers can choose how they wish to utilize these cell phone caddies: as a habitual practice, a punishment for inappropriate cell phone usage, or whatever they deem necessary.
“Students are at a point where they are reliant on their phones,” Hall said. “When it’s near them, it’s a real distraction, so I for one am excited about this new option as it will hopefully allow students to focus on schoolwork better.”