What are Stuyvesant Students’ Thoughts on the New Phone Policy?

What does the Stuyvesant student body think of the administration’s decision to prohibit the use of cell phones in school hallways?

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At the beginning of the school year, the Stuyvesant administration created a new policy prohibiting the use of cell phones in school hallways out of concern that phones are hindering students’ spatial awareness and limiting interpersonal connections between students. What does the Stuyvesant student body think of this decision?

“The intent behind the cell phone policy is good, but I don’t think that it will be effective in preventing hallway traffic. When I’m stuck in the hallway, I’m usually blocked by many people trying to move forward, rather than one or two students using their phones.” —Charlotte Peterson, senior

“[The phone policy] doesn’t really affect me that much, but I do feel like it may be a bit extreme because some people may just need to be on their phones. For example, [they could be] checking out their schedule [or] finding out their locker code.” —Jason Qin, senior

“I think [the policy] is better for the safety of the school, because students are constantly bumping into each other. [...] The other day, this freshman bumped into me and I almost fell, and it was all because he couldn’t look up from his phone. The thing is, I doubt [the policy] will actually work. Staff aren’t always going to be around to check if students are using their phones while walking, and obviously, there’s the addiction aspect.” —Eric Gao, junior

“I came to Stuy after the pandemic, when phones were allowed to be put on your desk [in] class and teachers would not care. I feel like it’s good that people have [their phones if] it’s an emergency or something like that. It hasn’t stopped [anyone] from interacting with each other in general [...] As we move forward as a society, phones are increasingly [becoming] part of our [lives] and there’s nothing we can do about that.” —Zainab Van, senior

“I feel that the new phone policy has the right intentions, but [it] won’t stop the root factor of the problem. Ultimately, the policy is there to increase hallway flow during transition periods, but I feel that the presence of phones has little effect. Before, if someone was on their phone in the hallway, people would still find a way to get around them or nudge them to the side so others could pass, and I think that hallways generally get crowded because there are too many people in too little space.” —Elijah Choi, sophomore

“I believe that enforcing the rule isn’t smart, especially at the beginning of the year, [because] you might be late for class or you might have to check your schedule. Stopping someone from [checking their schedule] might make them late for class and, in my opinion, that’s not worth it.” —Dannyar Akhmedov, junior

“I disagree with the new phone policy, [but I] generally feel indifferent, because there’s almost no enforcement and phones are necessary in school. There is a general disregard [of the policy] because students know there is no enforcement.” —William Jiang, junior

“I think a better solution [to the awareness problem] would be to let students use their phones unless they’re being negligent of their surroundings. For example, ignoring their name being called, bumping into teachers and students, etc.” —Madeline Chin, sophomore

“I think that the new phone policy is a good idea, and while I do agree with it, I don’t believe that many students will follow it. It makes sense that students shouldn’t be using their phones while walking in the hallways, as it may cause traffic or people accidentally bumping into each other.” —Ethan Cao, senior

“I think [the policy] won’t work because people will be glued to their phones no matter what, and the policy won’t make a large difference. In addition, people will be on edge because of the threat of having their phones confiscated by teachers [and] faculty [...] It makes students feel like teachers are against them, which negatively impacts Stuy teacher[-]student relationships and overall makes the school a less pleasant place to be.” —Adina Salant, junior

“I think the new cell phone policy isn’t really enforced, but there has been a good amount of effort being put into [creating] it. There’s proper reasoning behind why they’re trying to enforce the policy, as it will be safer for fellow students.” —Austin Ruan, junior

“The new phone policy should not be heavily enforced. I think that phones should still be allowed because students might need to check something really quick, such as a notification from a friend or an e-mail from a teacher. I acknowledge the potential traffic it can cause in the hallways, especially considering how many people walk along [others using phones] to get to their next class, so an [alternate] proposal would be to allow students to use their phones if they step aside [in] the hallways.” —Justin Moy, junior