Assistant Principal’s Plea for Parents to Monitor Cellphone Use

Posted on March 3, 2020 by Ken McCoy

“When I have to search a student’s cell phone, I’m sick to my stomach at what I find. It gets worse every year.”

“Parents. I am an assistant principal in a middle school (grades 6-8). My number one job is to create and sustain a school environment where both students and teachers feel safe (physically, emotionally, and mentally) to teach, learn, innovate, and socialize. I take my job very seriously, as do my colleagues. We work very hard to grow in our capacity to do this work on a daily basis.

I can’t begin to describe how much time I spend every day dealing with issues that stem from unsupervised cell phone usage by our students. In the situations where I have to search a student’s cell phone, I often get sick to my stomach at what I find (highly inappropriate photos, videos, messages, social media usage, etc.). The things our students are willing to try and be a part of at such a young age gets worse and worse every year.

When I call parents to inform them of what is going on, I always ask them how often they search their kids’ phones. The shock gets even worse when 90% of them say hardly ever or never. And then they get upset at me, accuse me of lying to them about their kids’ roles in certain situations, or expect me to somehow fix the situation.

Parents. It is your number one job as a parent to get in your kids’ way at all times. Kids do not deserve privacy without accountability. You own their devices, not them. You should be having the hard conversations with them about life, relationships, their bodies, their futures, etc. It is your responsibility to provide social and emotional support, help build coping skills, and monitor their activities, especially online. Please stop actively working against the schools and start working with us. We are not the enemy. We are trying to fulfill the role of both parent and educator in many situations, and that is a very delicate and difficult line to walk.

Youth leaders are engaged in a silent war with very real forces of darkness. Arm yourself when you join Youth Leaders Only.

Here are four tips for ‘getting in your child’s way.’ You can modify any of these based on your relationship with your children.

  1. Eat dinner as a family every night possible and actually talk. No devices allowed. Current research suggests parents only spend about 8 minutes a day in conversation with their kids. That’s unacceptable.
  2. Check their devices RANDOMLY AND OFTEN. You need to learn how to navigate their world. Inform yourself on how to use certain apps. Keep up with what apps are the most downloaded in the App Store. Make your kid show you their content and conversations and explain to you what is going on. Then give them advice. MAKE CONTENT WITH THEM and be part of their online presence.
  3. Create opportunities for them to have new experiences. Take them to do new things, see new things, and learn new things. This not only strengthens their brain development, emotional development, and builds resiliency in kids, but it also strengthens your relationship with them.
  4. And finally, do not let them take their phones into their rooms, shut their doors, and disappear for hours. Nothing good ever happens on the internet behind closed doors. The online world is by far the most dangerous place our students go to every day. We can’t assume they will intuitively know how to navigate the dangers of the online world on their own.

Please, help us with this.”

This story was submitted to Love What Matters by Chris C.This entry was posted in Ministry Resource. Bookmark the permalink.← Rocket Science Evangelism

Messy Bible Club Spring Schedule

Who: all girls from 6th grade to 12th grade to attend and you are welcome to bring a friend! 

Contact: Amy Bowles

When: Sundays 3-5pm 

Spring schedule: NO MEETINGS until April 4

Apr 5th – NO Bible Study – out of town for Granddaughter’s first bday party

Apr 12th – NO Bible Study (Easter)

Apr 19th

Apr 26th

May 3rd

May 10th – NO Bible Study – Mother’s Day

May 17th – Last Messy Bible Study for Spring

OSM BBQ Summer Trips Fundraiser

We Have Rudy’s BBQ Fundraiser Packets during our OSM Weekly Meetings or in the Office.

BBQ Fundraiser Details

  • For every ticket you sell for $8 you get $5 credit towards mission trip or camps in 2020
  • Anyone that donates money but doesn’t buy a ticket is directly donating to your trip expense. 100% of their donation goes to you
  • You can only check out 1 packet of 20 tickets at a time.
  • You MUST sign out each packet you take. 1 signature = 1 packet
  • All money, packets, and remaining tickets are due back on March 22nd.
  • Make sure to write your name on the packet prior to turning it in.
  • These are TO GO lunches and must be picked up on Sunday March 29th from 10:30am – 12:30pm at the Oakwood Kitchen.

Mother + Daughter 2020

NB Mothers & Middle/High School daughters

Friday, February 28th @ Oakwood Church

You don’t want to miss this fun night for middle & high school girls and their mom (or special mentor)! We will be talking about all the big & small places God wants to use each of us.

Tickets include

T-shirt for mom & daughter with our theme, “Don’t Miss your Mission”.

Desserts, a photo together, music, a powerful message, and special moments with your daughter

Doors will open at 6:30 p.m.

Tickets are $25 for a mother/daughter and $10 for each additional daughter.

REGISTER ONLINE HERE

Passport 2 Purity Getaway

Passport 2 Purity helps guide you through sessions to begin having conversations with your child about sex and purity in God’s plan.

As we are talking about issues with Purity and Sex in our weekly Middle School environments, I want to be honest with you as a Middle School Parent… I don’t like these talks either! This stuff is personal, and yet we live in a world that entices us to make our personal issues public, while exploiting every bit of them for whatever means are out there. That is a main reason the Oakwood Student Ministry carries that mindset that “SOMETHING MUST BE SAID” in regards to God’s Plan and what we are up against on a daily basis.

The second thing I want you to know is that, even though I am a Pastor in this area, I am still hoping and praying for my own kids to walk rightly in the Lord and choose a life of Purity. That is why Laura and I have been intentional with Katie, as she entered 6th grade, and Noah, as he is midway through 5th grade, to enter into the conversation about sex and God’s view of purity within His plan.

Our advice to you, whether you use this material or not, is to intentionally plan a time that is best for you and your child to have the deep conversations that will direct the future of your child’s sexuality toward Godly Wisdom, rather than the standards brought forth by the culture and worldly views we live in today.

Noah and I Toured the 750 foot tall Tower of the Americas during our Passport 2 Purity Getaway.

By the way, my time with Noah was not ALL SERIOUS stuff! I’m not that boring and he can’t stay still for that long. We planned a Spurs Game outing, ate tons of pancakes at IHOP, played games at Dave and Buster’s, and enjoyed some one-on-one time together. Yes, we shared deep things dealing with the purity issues of today, but we also connected in a way that will set up an ongoing conversation in the days to come. That, in my mind, is priceless.

Laura and I recommend Passport 2 Purity and the Family Life Ministry, because we know we need tools to help launch us into this teenage phase of life. We hope and pray that all our Middle School Parents have the opportunity to do the same, because we have already seen the positive impact.

If you are interested in the materials, click on the image and links below:

Click Here for the Family Life Shopping Website