The modern school is, unsurprisingly, a very different place to even ten years ago — largely thanks to the rise of technology. Where corridors once rang with the sound of laughter, they now buzz with the ping, ping, ping of WhatsApps, Snapchats and texts as students message each other in an ever-revolving cycle of communication. While the leisurely use of smartphones in the classroom is a universal no-no, some schools have taken matters into their own hands to focus pupils’ minds and improve their performance by issuing blanket digital detoxes across the board. But are they right to do so?
In January, headmaster Gregg Davies made headlines with his decision to ban pupils at Shiplake College in Henley-on-Thames from using their phones between 8.