Via reader Rob:
Montclair State Unveils Mandatory ‘School Phone’
Students Must Carry And Pay For GPS-Based Cell Device
MONTCLAIR, N.J. (CBS) ―
College students at Montclair State University are all talking about a new requirement that will require students to have a cell phone.
CBS 2 HD has learned more on this required feature that is forcing students to dig into their wallets.
At Montclair State, there is no excuse for being out of touch.
“‘School Phone’ I use for campus e-mail, different things like that,” freshman Angela Vuocolo said.
First-year student Vuocolo said ‘School Phone’ — as in a Sprint-operated cell phone — is now mandatory for all students. It’s the first program of its kind in the country.
The cost: $420 a year for a base plan which is bundled into the tuition bill.
It includes just 50 peak voice minutes a month, but unlimited text messaging to any carrier, unlimited campus-based data usage, and student activated emergency GPS tracking.
“What it does is allow students to have an extra pair or group of people watching over them when they’re going from one location to another,” Montclair Police Department Chief Paul Cell said.
The positive impact is already being felt across campus.
“It makes me feel comfortable,” MSU freshman Ricky Bodtmann said. “I guess if people want to feel safe.”
As Rob pointed out, “It makes them FEEL safer. I’m thinking that the phone won’t stop a bullet.”
And it won’t do much good against a knife or superior strength either. If safety were the goal that $420/year would be better spent on a gun, ammunition, and some range time. But this is New Jersey where, “When it comes to firearms, the citizen acts at his own peril.“