Give me a break
Getting their bell rung
BY AUSTIN FENNER and CARRIE MELAGO
DAILY NEWS STAFF WRITERS
This is what happens when rules replace common sense. I wouldn't wait six fucking weeks to get my phone, which I pay for, back. I'd march right into that office and demand it back or call the cops and have her arrested for theft. She may have the right to take the phones from the kids, but she can't tell adults what to do and if a parent wants to have their kid have a cell phone, she's not going to keep it for six weeks.
A Staten Island principal is taking the city school cell phone ban to a new level - by confiscating and keeping the gadgets for up to six weeks, students say.
Principal Linda Waite sent a letter to McKee High School parents last week, saying the school will keep seized phones until a parent conference on Oct. 26 or27.
"They should just give us our phones back," said John Branch, 16, a sophomore at the vocational school who thinks the delay is unfair.
"How can you hold it hostage for that long?" asked Carmen Colon, a Brooklyn parent who is a plaintiff in a lawsuit challenging the city's school cell phone ban. "Is that principal going to be paying for monthly usage?"
But attorney Norman Siegel, who is representing the parents group suing the city, called the policy "troubling."
"It's an abuse of authority by the principal," he said. "The idea of keeping it for 45 days ignores the reality that this is a vital link between students and parents."
Students blasted the delay, saying they need phones to check in with parents and feel safe. And they're upset at the prospect of paying monthly bills while having no phone.
Carla Tramylola, 15, was petrified yesterday when her phone rang during class even though she thought she had silenced it.
"My mom wants me to call her before I go to work," said Carla, who waitresses after school. "If they don't want us to use the phones in the hall, we won't."
Pebbles Pless, 16, had her phone confiscated yesterday, even though she thought she had a really good reason for using it.
"My mother was sick and I was calling to see how she was doing," she said.
This should have been settled last year amicably. Not dragged into court because Bloomberg has a bug up his ass about it. He's now lost a case about someone playing solitare in an office, now this nonsense.
No one has had their phone stolen, nor anything else. She just wants to make a show of it.
Now, this is likely to get ugly because some parent just isn't going to go for this crap, and there's no reason they have to. The city could have worked out logical, fair and uniform rules to permit this and not disrupt class. But as I predicted a year ago, this is in court, pointlessly, and the city will lose, either in court or in Albany, where Bloomberg is going to be fresh out of friends.
What happens when someone's family member dies and the school yanks the phone from them? How is that going to look in the Daily News?
posted by Steve @ 12:47:00 AM