Texting me crazy

Discussion in 'Secondary Education' started by Addybob, Apr 6, 2008.

  1. Addybob

    Addybob Rookie

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    I think our education system has a serious problem and it was not until last month when I figured it out. The problems is...bad parents.

    Three (of the 14) cell phones I took last month that were children responding to texts from their parents! The situation I had Wednesday was a perfect example of bad parents making my job impossible.

    I took little Johnny's phone because he was texting. He protested and said he was responding to his mom's text.

    5 minutes later my classroom phone rang. The V.P. of my school asked me to give little Johnny his phone back. His mother had called and said her son needed the phone for some reason. When I asked how she knew I took the phone, the V.P. said that her son's friend had texted her. (It turned out the Johnny borrowed his friend's phone). Long story short, I had to give the phone back to this kid while he smiled like a jackass.

    The kid received a 45-minute detention, but he didn’t care. Showing my up in class was well worth it.

    Is there a solution to texting? Especially when not every teaching on campus treats it the same way?
     
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  3. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    I often think about getting one of those cell phone signal jammers. I'm sure they're illegal, but I'd love to have one in my room anyway. I wonder how much they cost?


    Addybob, I have no solution to offer you other than to urge you to continue doing what you're doing. You can't win 'em all, but that doesn't mean you should stop trying. Cell phone activation in class is distracting, and I'm sorry that your administration doesn't recognize that.
     
  4. INteacher

    INteacher Aficionado

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    Do they really make and sell such a thing :confused:? I wonder if one teacher in a hallway had one if it would jam all cell phones on that hall?? I bet I could get every teacher in my building to chip in for one of them. I'm going to google it right now :lol:
     
  5. INteacher

    INteacher Aficionado

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    Okay - they are illegal to use and FCC can fine you up to $11,000. Boy it was a fun thought though :)
     
  6. cheeryteacher

    cheeryteacher Enthusiast

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    Addybob, does your school have any rules about cell phones. At my school we know kids have them so as long as I don't see them or hear them, I don't do anything. But if a staff member takes one away, it's gone until they decide to give it back. I can't believe your A.P. undermined your authority like that.
     
  7. Iowa_Teacher

    Iowa_Teacher Rookie

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    My principal backs us 100% with this. He told the kids at the beginning of the year that teachers were allowed to take cell phones and turn them in to the office. The first time, the kid can pick it up after school. The second time, a parent must come to pick it up. The third time, he keeps it. I'm not sure how long. It's nice to know he backs us up, no matter what! I can't imagine being undermined like that IN FRONT of the kids. Good luck!
     
  8. Vegas Art Guy

    Vegas Art Guy Rookie

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    In many schools here in LV if we see it the deans get it. Usually a 'hide or lose it' works wonders. Whatever you decide to do simply stick with it.
     
  9. Miss W

    Miss W Phenom

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    I would be so mad if I were you! I can understand why you feel frustrated. Have you talked to your V.P. about the situation?
     
  10. Addybob

    Addybob Rookie

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    Yes, we talked...

    My VP was very busy that day and did not fully get the picture when the parent called. Damage done I guess, but nothing like it has happened since.

    About the jammers. Yes, they are highly illegal and only work for a short time. That is only half true. They work as long as you want them to, but their signal levels are so high I heard you risk health problems if they are on for serveral hours.

    I started one thing that does seem to work. When I take a phone I put it into a big white envelope. I write the student's name as big as I can and, while the kids are on break or at lunch, I playfully walk it to the office. Several students have begun to notice the routine and ask who's phone I snagged. Word gets around and the kids seem to laugh along with it...

    I just try to keep it light, but consistent...
     
  11. mmswm

    mmswm Moderator

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    Maybe you could send a letter home to the parents about proper behavior during school hours. Remind the parents that cell phones are NOT allowed to be on during school hours, and if they need to get in touch with their child they need to call the office (or whatever the proper procedure is in your school.)
     
  12. Historyteaching

    Historyteaching Cohort

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    We have incidents, where the parents are calling the schools saying I'm trying to get a hold of my child, he/she isn't answering their cell phone. Could you please (give msg/bring them to phone/have them answer their cell phone)?

    Insanity...
     
  13. Budaka

    Budaka Cohort

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    I can't let my middle school girls go to the bathroom because they text each other from there! Usually to people in the same class. Whatevery happened to good old note passing?
     
  14. Lives4Math

    Lives4Math Comrade

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    I tutor some middle school girls and they have told me that they will text their mom's from school when they are confused to ask them to ask me if they can come for help that day. One of the mom's has even told me "X just texted me from math class and asked if they can come for tutoring today, are you available?" Where as I like having notice....and I love being able to help them (and I like the money).....It's frustrating to hear a parent not care that their child is sending text messages in the middle of class!
     
  15. Miss W

    Miss W Phenom

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    I would send a blanket note home to everyone with the section from the hadbook copied for them to see.
     
  16. INteacher

    INteacher Aficionado

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    If I did this, the hallway would be littered with my notes. :D High school students don't take home notes.

    What I wish I could do with parents that text their students during school - take the cell phone away, text the parent back "why are you interputing you child's educational instruction by texting her during class?"

    On a postive note, one of my students mentioned her mom took her cell phone away for a week because she noticed on the cell phone bill her daughter was texting during class :2up:
     
  17. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    Good for that mom!! :clap:
     
  18. Miss W

    Miss W Phenom

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    I understand. My thinking is that if you "sent" the note home with the student and posted it on your website, then you have done your job to reinform them of the policy.

    I still can't believe that the VP told the OP to give the student back the phone.
     
  19. mmswm

    mmswm Moderator

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    Pure insanity. These are the same parents who complain that the teachers are obviously not doing their jobs since their child isn't doing well in class. Well DUH, stop districating same said child and maybe he/she could actually listen to the teacher. What a novel concept.
     
  20. ms_chandler

    ms_chandler Comrade

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    Insane.

    Cell phones are banned on our campus, but we know that the kids still have them turned off in their schoolbags. Just sight of them sends a kid to ISS for a day. Their parents have to pick up their phones after school. A girl and boy were caught texting in class for a period of 3 hours on and off.... Insane. She got busted by her teacher before me, so I heard all about it.

    Word on the street is that it's almost impossible to text in my class because I'm always watching. However, I'm not gonna say it's never happened before. Girls text in their purses, and boys text through their pants pockets.

    I helped revise the handbook for next year which says we can keep a cell phone for a month after seizing it. I wonder how parents will like that... paying a bill while we have the phone!
    :)
     
  21. Tasha

    Tasha Phenom

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    Apr 12, 2008

    I have a friend who had a prant demand that she charge "Little Billy's" phone so that he could call her during lunch.


    This was first grade.


    Luckily, the principal intercepted and told her that if she left the phone she would have to pick it up on the last day of school :2up:
     
  22. JustT

    JustT Comrade

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    Oh my.... This hapened to me recently in elementary school. I also recently heard of a student who was talking to her mother about her cat in the restroom!

    I'm sooo tempted to tell the calling parents to leave a message because they are currently busy. :lol:
     
  23. mmswm

    mmswm Moderator

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    I guess one good thing about working in a high poverty school is that not many of my kids actually have cell phones. The few do know the principal is a hard nose about them and rarely bring them out during the school day.
     
  24. AF Mom

    AF Mom Rookie

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    Kids at our school can have cell phones but can only use them before and after school. If we see or hear them we take them to the principal and the kids get them back on Fri. The second time the parent has to get it and they pay a fine. The third time the principal keeps it until the end of the grading period. He is pretty good about keeping them. Some parents get pretty hot but it is in our handbook and they sign it at the beginning of school so too bad--so sad.
     
  25. Calliope

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    Ya know, in the state of Arkansas it's actually illegal for a student to have a cell phone or beeper at school. It's a holdover from when only drug dealers had them.

    At our school they will be confiscated on sight. The phones go to the office. They have to wait 24 hours to pick it back up, & a parent has to (take off work and) come up to the school & pick it up. Second or third offenders are sent to ISS.

    I (& many other teachers) offer to hold cell phones in our desks during the day. I will take a student's phone, but he/she can't get it back until after last block.

    If one goes off in my room, I tell whoever it is to bring it to me now, or I'll call for a scan of every student in the class (they do electronic scans at my school). This makes the rest of the students strongly encourage the offender to come forward with it. If I take it up in class it's gone to the office for 24 hours (or hehe over the weekend or even over a holiday if it times out).

    Maybe you could offer to hold phones during the day. Of course, if admin doesn't back you up, it's a tough situation.
     
  26. Calliope

    Calliope Companion

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    Oh yes, & I have taken a kid's phone & answered it & told that person calling that he was in class.

    I've also answered their text messages. "I'm sorry. Billy isn't available. This is his teacher. He's busy, & now his phone is gone."
     
  27. deserttrumpet

    deserttrumpet Comrade

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    Last year one of my students was caught texting. She pulled a big story abour her mom having just informed her that her grandfather died and started to cry. She carried the story for a while, but a bit of digging revealed the lie. She got in big trouble at school and at home... hehe
     
  28. mmswm

    mmswm Moderator

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    ahhhh, if kids would put the same effort into their education as they do their stories, they wouldn' tneed the stories.
     
  29. LMath85

    LMath85 Companion

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    I've had the same situation with my students being on the phone with their parents. It happened twice in the same week with two separate students. The first student actually got out of their seat, answered the phone and walked out of my classroom. I took the phone away and gave it to the Deans (who handle all cell phone issues)

    The next day, I was teaching and one of my students says to me "my phone is ringing" I said ignore it and pay attention. I continued to teach and out of the corner of my eye I see the student looking down into their desk. I took the phone and continued to teach. After class the student was literally screaming at me to give the phone back because they were "texting mom!" I couldn't believe it. The deans took the phone and the mom had to come up to pick up the cell phone.


    I swear, the parents aren't any better. I have to follow school policy on cell phones for every student. I can't take into consideration that you are calling your son or daughter. Simple as that. Follow the rules - and don't call your kid while they are in school!!
     
  30. Irishdave

    Irishdave Enthusiast

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    Jammers
    $280 to $400
    http://www.kumaar.com/Jammers/Jammers.htm

    But in the USA they are Illegal to operate, manufacture, import, or offer for sale, including advertising (Communications Act of 1934), with fines of up to $11,000 and imprisonment of up to one year.
     
  31. Irishdave

    Irishdave Enthusiast

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    Kids at our school can have cell phones but can only use them before and after school and must be turned off during school.if we see them we take them away and ONLY the parent may pick them up from the office. And the Principals back us up! they have the huevos (even the women VPs) to do it!

    as to the VP I would have told HIM to give it to the student because I was not going to
     
  32. Irishdave

    Irishdave Enthusiast

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    OH my God why would you think that????????

    Stories now that is another thread!
     
  33. Hoot Owl

    Hoot Owl Aficionado

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    Let's see, what's more valuable, texting, or educating??

    I've had 2nd graders bring dead ones or abandoned ones to school and they were verbally chastised for it. It's in our handbooks, too.
    I think admin supports the teachers.

    This would make me angry.
     
  34. MrU82

    MrU82 Rookie

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    Oh man I LOVE when kids use their cell phones in class. They get them taken away...and their parents dont even care to come pick them up even AFTER being contacted. Needless to say I havent bought a new phone in the last 18 months. :D;)
     
  35. Miss W

    Miss W Phenom

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    ? So you are using the confiscated ones? :confused:
     
  36. MrU82

    MrU82 Rookie

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    lol it was joke. I have the same phones sitting in my desk drawer in a box. I keep them as more of a "trophy" to show the students that I'm not messing around and that their cell phones WILL get taken away. When they see the 15 cell phones I've collected they know who is boss. I dont really have a problem with it anymore. Its almost always girls that get their phones taken away.

    There are some phones that I wouldnt mind using. Some of these kids have nicer phones than us teachers.
     
  37. txteach2b

    txteach2b Comrade

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    Tell me about it!! And to top it all off, a lot of the students here don't exactly have a lot of money. Look at their $300 phones! It makes me wonder what their parent's priorities are.
     
  38. MrU82

    MrU82 Rookie

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    Yeah, they can "afford" 300 dollar phones, $400 ipod touches, etc etc...but when asked to pay $20 for PE clothes or $75 for AP Test Fee...oh "i cant afford it." :rolleyes:
     
  39. Irishdave

    Irishdave Enthusiast

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    one word
    SAD
     
  40. Irishdave

    Irishdave Enthusiast

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    The other night on "COPS" some kid had his pager taken and the mother did not even know the number to dial! Said she got it for him because "all the other kids have them".... (must have been an old rerun)
    The parent's priorities are not "parenting" I know that.

    Right now my Step Daughter has a cell phone but it is because she is in every after school extra curriculum club she can be in and volunteers at the hospital one night a week AND she is in AP classes and on Honor Roll she earned it with good grades
     
  41. wunderwhy

    wunderwhy Comrade

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    If you can get kids to be honest, they'll admit that cell phones play a huge part in cheating. Kids can text message without looking at their phone (for example, with the phone in the pocket of a hooded sweatshirt or under something on their lap) and will do something along the lines of

    4?
    4D

    to tell each other the answers. It is not only a distraction but a test security concern. It's important to make sure that your faculty is aware of the possibility of cheating via textmessaging and follows through with taking phones. I always say, "All study materials and communication devices must be out of sight and reach" when I hand out a quiz and a test. And I scramble the answers so that the kid asking for the answer to #4 may very well be asking somebody with a different question for #4, or the answers in a different order. I believe that creating different versions of quizzes and tests and using fill in the blank rather than multiple choice makes it harder to text the answers to each other.
     

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