Written by Jillian Crowley and Aryn McQuarrie|
Photos by Jillian Crowley|
This first year at the new Morgan School students were issued Chromebooks to enhance their learning. Originally, there were only restrictions on websites that were not beneficial to our everyday learning; however, that has changed. Now, apps such as Netflix, Spotify, Instagram, and Twitter are blocked too.
There are a lot of mixed emotions and thoughts on the new policy. Algebra and Geometry teacher Paige Trusty stated that “I personally appreciate the restrictions for my classroom. It is a school device that the district pays for, therefore, [the Chromebooks] should be school oriented.” Ms. Trusty also discussed how she feels that apps such as Spotify and Netflix are not a necessity. However, many students and teachers had a different look on this topic.
English teacher and Program Chair Paul Serenbetz said the blocked websites specifically affect his classroom. He explained, “I wanted my class to be able to watch five different featured films on Netflix, but they could not because it is blocked both in and out of school.” He wants Netflix specifically to “be unblocked so kids could watch the featured films.”
Freshman Maura Kelly said, “Netflix is a distraction; however, it can be used for educational purposes.” Netflix may have many binge watch TV shows that can cause students to not focus during class, but it does hold many movies that can be a great source to expand the knowledge of students. Teachers also use movies or clips from movies to supplement lessons, but Netflix is a resource no longer available to them.
Twitter, a social media app, is also blocked and that affects our own Morgan PawPrint. The Morgan PawPrint has various students running social media accounts to promote the blog. Since Twitter is blocked the PawPrint staff cannot post information during the class period. Twitter also can be used to follow journalists or to find out what the people participating in different events around the world are thinking and doing.
Junior Jordan McMillian, mentioned a way to try to get certain websites unblocked. She stated, “Students should go to Keri Hagness [the Morgan School’s principal], and propose a valid reason why certain apps should be unblocked.” Freshman Taylor Wyatt also had a similar opinion towards getting websites unblocked. Taylor adds, “Students need to get someone of higher power, like a junior or senior who has made an influence on the school, and go to the principal. A junior or senior would be best to bring the topic up because they would be heard.”
The blocking of certain websites for the students at the Morgan School has its pros and cons. The internet can be a distraction but also a great tool for education.