SPS Should Adopt Yondr Pouch System for Students


Yondr pouches help keep students focused during school

Nicholas Mutter, Contributing Writer

In 2007, Apple released the first iPhone to the public. Since then, cell phones have become a necessary component of day-to-day life for the majority of the planet’s population. The cell phone has provided people all over the world with immense connectivity and comfort; however, there is one demographic that is often harmed by the existence of cell phones: teenagers.

According to national surveys presented by a Ted Talk presenter, psychologist Jean Twenge, mental health problems ranging from hurtful emotions to acts of suicide have greatly risen in adolescents since the introduction of the cell phone. In order to combat these negative trends, the Yondr company has created a pouch that stops us, teens, from using our phones while in school in hopes of decreasing overall phone usage. The implementation of the Yondr pouch system into the Scituate school system would be beneficial as it would increase the focus and well-being of the student body.

One major benefit of Yondr pouches in schools is the increase in focus of students in class. With unrestricted access to cell phones in class, students’ attention often strays away from the subject of study. Even small glances at phones every few minutes or so are enough to disrupt the mental comprehension of a student. Yondr pouches are able to combat that by completely cutting the student off from their phone and figuratively forcing the student to pay attention in class.

This reality was illustrated during Mrs. Hall’s F block’s two-week usage of Yondr pouches, as focus levels — recorded by daily surveys — showed a clear and consistent trend upward the longer the students used the pouches. I personally also experienced a rise in efficiency during my short time using Yondr. With normal cell phone access, I would often put off class work to do after school for homework, which would result in a poorer quality of work submitted. With the use of the Yondr pouch, work was completed at a much higher rate, which led to me being able to work on other assignments and decrease my overall workload for the day. These increases in efficiency and focus are directly caused by the absence of phones due to the Yondr pouch. 

Using Yondr pouches also benefits the mental health of students. The average teen deals with many social distractions on their cell phone, ranging from social media to important texts to breaking news. The demandingness of these aspects can often engulf a teen and cause them to begin to lose their values and self-control. An adolescent can often forget what is truly important and meaningful in their life if they are constantly bombarded with their cell phone and their mental health can deteriorate. Yondr addresses this issue, as it allows students to be severed from their cell phones and lets them truly analyze what people, things, and information are really relevant to their lives. Mrs. Hall’s F block experiment also showed evidence of this, as students described feeling higher energy levels and mental strength and clarity while using Yondr. 

The implementation of Yondr into Scituate Public Schools may seem to be a daunting task due to worries about backlash from students. Students may be reluctant, irritable, and resentful because of the interruption of their everyday lives and the separation of them from their lines of communication. However, this is an expected and normal reaction. Yondr is used in over one thousand schools nationwide and has seen all kinds of student reactions to the pouches.

Matthew Army, a northeastern representative for Yondr, has seen a notable increase in Yondr usage in his region over the last few years. He has seen students go as far as organizing a walk out and protest Yondr, but in less than a year’s time, the same students came to fully accept Yondr into their school lives.

Army also stressed the importance of implementing Yondr, as he described the process of students going without their phones and recognizing that they are “more than their cell phones.” This realization often comes with a drastic improvement in focus, grades, and mental well-being as students grow past needing their phones as much.

Despite any hardships that may arise during the process, it would still be extremely beneficial to the Scituate Public School System to implement the Yondr pouch system in some form as the pros wildly outweigh the cons. The separation of students from phones that Yondr provides is proven to result in better focus and grades as well as happier students.