James Hock - MRH Faculty
Schools Going too Far in Website Banning
By Caitlyn P.
MRHS - At school you must follow certain rules and have limitations to what's available in a learning environment. This leads to schools limiting what's available to look at online in school. However, have the schools gone too far in website banning?
Schools put these limitations in place because it makes sure that students are on task and not scrolling through Instagram during class. But with the world around us growing more and more tech savvy so should the schools adapt. While it is understandable why they must block bad websites, why do they block harmless ones that would be helpful during assignments? In a recent article by Michaeal Gonchar in The New York Times it states, “The other day I was researching birth control for my health class and it took me way longer than it should have to complete my essay because the web filter wouldn’t let me open any websites including Planned Parenthood.” How is this helping students?
I am currently a graphic designer and if there is something that is critical in starting
any project is that we must do research to get ideas. However, major picture sources are all
blocked. Places like Pinterest is a great place to gather ideas and most non-virus free use high quality picture giving websites like pixabay are also in the list of blocked websites. All these blockings make it extremely hard to work on projects as I must wait till I get home till Ican get started.
This even goes with social media websites: some of them are extremely helpful and will
provide inspiration. It does not only apply to design or art but also any other type
of subject out there. Guidance is always helpful and without some students can struggle
with ideas. But there is definitely a fine line when it comes to social media outlets. Students
will obviously want to scroll through social media than listen to a lesson being taught.
However shouldn’t this be made clear by teachers when it comes to students managing their time? Especially in high school most of us are ‘adults’ and should learn that there are consequences to our actions.“I understand why the school blocks certain websites since obviously we want to keep up a good school environment” MRHS student Sky Stanley states, “ However, I would also want at least in high school, to be able to watch YouTube videos that I enjoy watching on my school account.” Unlike other schools, in high school we can have a lot of free time in our hands but we can enjoy it if we can't open up a simple online mobile game or social media.
When it comes to Mountain Range High School if there is one location that would
benefit the ability to be removed from these heavy restrictions it would be the library. From a
recent survey many MRHS students were able to confirm how annoying it is to be unable to play any mobile games or watch online videos because that area is the schools internet dead-zone. Not every student has a friend to talk to so what's a better way to pass time then browse entertaining websites or play mobile games?
In the end, I am not saying that schools should completely uplift all restrictions on
banning. But, the idea that most websites and apps that are blocked are completely harmless
and could possibly be more beneficial than harmful in the long run.