Broward News

Text Messages: The New Way to Tattle?

Rambo, remember to text us about your weapons before you get to class.
Oh, come on! Has it really come to this? The Broward School District is counting on students to text message security threats? From the article:

But after the Nov. 12 shooting, Broward Superintendent Jim Notter -- an avid texter -- asked to add texting to the mix.

Text-message tips will be routed to school district security dispatchers and then sent to the Blackberrys of four district officials, including school district security chief Joe Melita. Melita said text-message tips are ideal for the modern student.

''Students are more familiar with texting,'' Melita said. ``They can be two feet next to someone, and they still can be texting each other or someone else as they're talking or multitasking.''
The kids! Such multi-taskers! They can listen to the Little Wayne while they're watching TV and doing homework, yet still drop a text to Mr. Notter about how Andy said he's bringing his flamethrower to class tomorrow.

That, or else school officials will get about a million phony leads, each of which will have to be investigated and turned into official reports that sound like this: "After questioning, Suzy admitted that Jenny didn't really make a shiv in Home Ec class but rather that she was totally flirting with the guy who Jenny sat with at lunch yesterday." And this one's inevitable: "Upon investigation, it appears that when Tyler said he was 'working on my guns' he was speaking figuratively about his biceps."

But let's be honest about what this really is: school officials desperate to show the public they're doing something in response to last year's shooting at Dillard High, plus all the other reports of students showing up for class strapped with a handgun. And, hey, if that means you get a few less calls from hysterical parents, fine. It's just that for a school district that can't give teachers a raise and which is begging for federal bailouts and screaming about state funding cuts, this is hardly the time for symbolic gestures that fritter away school resources.

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Thomas Francis