The War on Headphones

By Michael E. Komorowski
LifeAtStart Reporter

Headphones2I decided to do a little investigating at Roy C. Start High School to understand the reasoning behind banning headphones in school. I went to different teachers asking them all the same questions.

Why do you think headphones are banned? Do you agree with this rule and what are your opinions on the ban?

I asked Melissa Hooker, a popular science teacher known to be welcoming and understanding, who had a different view than most teachers on this topic.

“I think students should be allowed to use headphones as long as they are respectful if a faculty member needs them.”

Mrs. Hooker also allows students to use their headphones in her classroom when they are doing independent work and when she is not teaching her lesson. After hearing her opinion on this topic I proceeded to my third-hour classroom where I interviewed Allison Brumenshankel, who teaches marketing. “Mrs. B,” as most students know her by, had a fair view on this topic. “Having headphones in can not only be a distraction, but a safety hazard”.

As I continued on through my long day of school I stopped in for a quick visit to a known headphone “collector.” Scott Mallet, a science teacher, who had this very interesting perspective on this topic.

“First off, there is no reason to have headphones in for only five minutes, and secondly, it is a hearing impairment and can be dangerous.”

When I questioned, “What if students were to use their headphones when working independently in class?” He responded, “Still no, because classical music is the only known music that aids learning, so when students listen to other genres of music it is just a distraction.”

After hearing that I decided to go to the top of the food chain and ask the person responsible for this unfair rule, Principal Ed Perozek, who had this to say: “It’s a safety issue in the hallways in case of an emergency drill.”

I proceeded to ask about headphone use in classrooms and he replied: “As long as teachers permit it, and the headphones are put away before entering the hallway.”

As the day went on I kept thinking to myself who would have a very personal and fair opinion on this topic. After lunch I took a trip down to a teacher that truly loves her job, Jennifer Lahey, one of Start’s art teachers.

“It is always the few that ruin it for the many,” she said. “It is the kids that take advantage and abuse the use of headphones, that’s why they are banned.”

Mrs. Lahey also agreed with Mr. Perozek and other teachers that it can also be a safety hazard when in the hallways.

Contact Michael E. Komorowski at mikekomo14@gmail.com.