DepEd 12 vows strict implementation of cell phone ban during classes

May 31, 2010 1:38 pm 

GENERAL SANTOS CITY, May 31 – Students and pupils in all public schools in Region 12 or Southwestern Mindanao will no longer be allowed to carry and use mobile or cell phones inside their classrooms when the regular classes formally open on June 15.

Dr. Allan Farnazo, Department of Education (DepEd)-Region 12 assistant regional director, bared this move Monday in response to the agency’s efforts to purge public schools in the country of the “jejemon mentality.”

“These jejemons mainly exist because we allowed our children to use cell phones. It’s time to stop this and we’ll make sure that the existing ban on the use of cell phones during classes or inside classrooms will be implemented properly,” he said.

In November 2003, then Education Secretary Edilberto de Jesus issued a memorandum that “strictly imposes a ban on the use of cell phones by students during class hours.”

DepEd imposed such ban after finding out that a number of students were using cell phones to cheat during examinations.

It noted that the use of cell phones often distracts teachers and students when classes were going on.

Farnazo cited that the ban does cover the bringing of cell phones to school and their use outside the class hours as some parents mainly allowed their children to own such gadget for communication purposes, especially during emergencies.

But he urged parents to also limit the use of cell phones by their children as they sometimes lead to distractions such as the use of jejemons.

Online references noted that the jejemon phenomenon “involves the use of different spellings of common words, and is noticeable not only in text messaging but also in social networking sites.”

Jejemons are defined by Urban Dictionary as those "who has managed to subvert the English language to the point of incomprehensibility and online lynch squads."

“Some people point out that the use of jejemon is a form of free expression and we’re not opposing that view. But let’s not complicate matters here, I don’t think our students are getting any better by writing text messages based on unconventional symbols and wrong grammar,” Farnazo said.

Aside from the use of cell phones, the education official expressed worries over the rising number of school children who are now using some of the modern technologies such as computers and gaming gadgets.

He cautioned that too much use of such “expensive technologies” may pose distraction and cause some behavioral problems on school children.

“I’m personally worried about this because it’s quite expensive now to make our children happy. Gone were the days when children were just happy cutting old slippers and bending old tin cans to make toy cars. These things helped the children then to become more independent and creative,” Farnazo lamented. (PNA)



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