By 2012 some 98% of schools either did not allow phones on school premises or required them to be handed in at the beginning of the day.

This is really no surprise to most people, but as smartphone ownership among teenagers rise across the country, some schools are beginning to lift these complete bans. This calls into the question: Will mobile phones disturbing students from their work? 

Now in 2017, there has been another call to ban mobile phones from schools. with the latest call for the ban focused on the mental health of young people in Britain. There are plenty of valid reasons to eliminate phones from schools: they are distracting for students, they promote cyber bullying, they make the school a less safe place.

Study in 2015 published by the Centre for Economic Performance at the London School of Economics. showed that across multiple schools, when mobile phones were banned, tests scores went up an average of 6.4% in 16 year olds. Even more importantly, this ban helped those who were from the most disadvantaged backgrounds and were doing less well academically. This is evidence that cannot be ignored. 

On the other hand, parents argue that mobile phones should be accessible in case of emergencies. However in the present day and age another compelling reason has emerged.
A few years ago, primary function of mobile phones were communication but with the arrival of smartphones, mobiles have become: notebooks, sketch pads and cameras among others. They often exceed the speed of the computers found in terribly underfunded schools and almost everyone has one with them all the time.

My own school, Newstead Wood School, is one of the schools that have lifted the complete ban on mobile phones. While this first started with allowing students to use them in their free time at lunch, both teachers and students soon embraced this technology. Phones are used to research in class, access electronic textbooks, take photos of notes to send to ill classmates just to name a few uses. 

‘Phone use might be considered excessive however it's a necessary part of  life for communication and studying among other things.’ - fellow classmate Yii-Ling Deng.

While some may argue even controlled use of mobile phones in school can become a distraction, the truth is, mobile technology is here to stay. Mobile technology will become an integral part of teenagers lives as they reach adulthood and enter the workforce. Surely it is better for young people to learn how to work with a potential distraction and even learn to take advantage of it before it could make an even greater impact on their lives? 

Perhaps mobile phones should be banned in certain situations. For example, it would be banned for underachieving students from disadvantaged backgrounds who would not benefit greatly. However, as this ban benefits already high achieving students very little, phone use could be allowed in some certain situations.

Mobile phone use is not and should not be a student's right but it is certainly a valuable privilege.