2 min read | 408 words | 177 views | 0 commentsArticle as it ran in The Waukesha Freeman (page 5A)
West High School administration announced this year that the district's cellphone policy, No. 5136, had been relaxed to allow students to use cellphones during lunch and in between classes. While the district says it aims to provide "safe and secure" Internet access and Policy 7540 promises safeguards inhibiting negative side effects, its IT department has been fiercely deploying wireless technology in all K-12 learning environments, despite studies confirming too much technology leads to drops in test scores and retention. Two classes unanimously said they didn't like using tablets for education, although some admitted they enticed gaming.
Policy 7434 says "the negative health effects of tobacco are well-established," but equally well-established in tens of thousands of peer-reviewed independent studies are the effects of radio frequency radiation, a Class 2B carcinogen — in the same category as toxins like lead, DDT, and engine exhaust. Although DDT was banned in 1972, governments and health agencies have failed to strengthen regulations on RF radiation. In 2015, a British high school student committed suicide after her school refused to provide her with Wi-Fi free learning spaces, and Massachusetts parents sued a boarding school for not accommodating their 12-year-old's diagnosed debilitating sensitivity to Wi-Fi. Computers have been hardwired using Ethernet cables for decades, but the district hardwires only as a last resort, even though hardwiring would allow for faster, more secure, and more reliable network connectivity and eliminate RF radiation health risks. Mandatory irradiation discriminates against those disabled or sensitized to RF radiation and robs students the right to learn in a healthy environment, and Policy 5136 is discriminatory because it permits tech addicts to indulge at everyone else's expense. But rather than complying with Policy 7540 by removing Wi-Fi and enforcing strict cellphone bans, the district has chosen to ignore it.
The government once said tobacco was safe and couldn't cause cancer, and it took a high death toll before public policy caught up to the science. Epidemiologists assert we're going through with wireless what we once did with tobacco and asbestos. Wireless corporations continue influencing public opinion about the safety of their technologies and lobbying governments to retain lax standards, but some schools are gutting Wi-Fi to safeguard health. Whether the district will be proactive remains to be seen, but as people become aware of the implications, schools refusing to come to terms with the science shouldn't expect taxpayers to be happy about subsidizing initiatives that harm their children's health.