The Official News Publication of Herriman High School

The Herriman Telegraph

The Official News Publication of Herriman High School

The Herriman Telegraph

Understanding the New Herriman High Policies: A Teacher’s Perspective

Mrs Shurtleff shares her thoughts on Herriman’s new phone, attendance, and dress code policies.

HERRIMAN – Welcome back to Herriman High! This 2023-24 school year is sure to be an exciting one with just a few changes from last year. As of the first day of school, Herriman is implementing a new phone policy as well as updating the attendance and dress code standards. Mrs Shurtleff offered insight into the new policies and stadards that students are held to. 

Phone Policy

Herriman High’s new phone policy states that “cell phones are prohibited from use in classrooms and any other area in which academic work is being done unless otherwise instructed by the teacher.” This includes any device that can take pictures, use the internet or send text messages. Teachers are expected to have conversations with each of their classes about rules for phones in their classroom. Teachers are also given the option to collect phones at the beginning of class. If a student refuses to comply with their policy, a teacher will take the device and send an email home to the students parents/guardians. On the second and third offense parents and administration will be contacted, the device will be taken and a meeting may be set up with administration that includes the student’s parents/guardians. Electronic devices conflict with the schools goal of providing a “safe and productive learning environment.” 

“Overall teachers are feeling very optimistic about the phone policy,” said Mrs Shurtleff when asked what her thoughts were on the new technology expectations. She expressed her concern about how phones were interrupting learning in the classroom and “consuming [students’] mental energy.” She shared that last year she experienced issues with students gaming, watching movies, and distracting their peers with cell phones and ear buds. “I also think it just shows a general lack of respect for teachers, imagine if a teacher just sat on their phone at the front of the class instead of teaching,” said Shurtleff. She also explains how, even if a phone is damaged in possession of a teacher, the teacher should not be liable. “Taking a phone anywhere leaves it open to damage and if you’re at somewhere like an amusement park and leave your phone in a cubby, they don’t ‘assume responsibility’ if something happens,” she explained. Overall, Shurtleff hopes this new phone policy will help promote learning and productivity in the classroom.

Attendance Policy

  1. Herriman High’s attendance policy is nothing new but teachers are being especially strict with it this year. Hall passes are enforced and limited much more than in previous years. Teachers are encouraged to watch for those students who abuse the hall pass, leaving class for over 20 minutes, or taking it too frequently. The tardy and unexcused absence policy still stands. Administration continues to be strict with their 30 minutes on Fridays to make up twotardies and an hour for one unexcused absence. 

When asked what her thoughts were on this policy Shurtleff expressed how tardies have become an even bigger issue in these first two weeks of school which suggests there are unresolved issues from last year. She explains, “overall, I think improvements have been made to the attendance policy that will help get students to class.” She explains how being even five minutes late to class can cause students to miss important instruction and cause disruption to the entire class. In summary, Shurtleff explained, “ even something as small as a tardy is causing class-wide issues and more work for teachers trying to make sure the whole class is learning and knows what’s going on.”

Dress Code 

Herriman High’s dress code has recently been refreshed and teachers have been asked to go over it with their students. Students are required to have clothes in good repair, limit how much skin is exposed and not wear anything that would be “distracting” to other students or staff. Mrs. Shurtleff expressed her “controversial opinion” on the dresscode when asked what her overall thoughts on the policy are. “I don’t know that I find any clothes ‘distracting’…Hats, shoulders showing etc… has never bothered me.” However she also says that it is important to be “dressed for the job”. Meaning that students should dress differently for school than they would for a party or event taking place outside of school. 

Overall, Herriman High’s new policies have been implemented in an attempt to better the learning environment for all students. Staff and parents hope to create an environment where learning and participation are encouraged and distractions and disruptions are limited. Hopefully these policies help to make this school year productive and one of the best yet.

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