There is not a whole lot to be said on this topic other than it has to stop. It is terrifying to me, and the statistics are astounding: the NYTimes reports today that the risk of collision is 23 times higher when texting than when not. It is a problem for all of us to confront and resolve, but there is every reason it is especially common among our high school students, and we are going to have to consider carefully how we can lead them to recognize the risks and reform their practices. I know I risk being directive and bossy here, but this is a very frightening problem. This blog advocates regularly that we welcome our students to use their powerful digital tools to enhance their learning. When we ban students from this usage, we are looking backwards and missing great opportunities. I think I am taking a bit of an alternative view when I say that if texting belongs in the office (and it does) it belongs in the classroom. But it does not belong behind the wheel– and we must fight this.
I am curious to learn what other schools will be doing to confront this problem. One thought I have is to, in assembly, to project on the screen and myself take the interactive test the Times provides. Let’s work together on this.