I will try and do weekly links to interesting articles, with brief commentary. So here goes
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/newsbysector/mediatechnologyandtelecoms/1117Every school I hsbe worked in has banned personal electronics. This includes Ipods and other musical listening devices. I have secretly experimented and allowed a triwl run of students listening to their music on headphones. I do not have any empirical data, but did notice less behavioral problems, especially among students who usually refuse to do any schooleork. When "plugged in", thry could tune out and listen to music instead of disrupting others. Many students seemed to focus better on the task at hand. Thry could tune out other noises and let thr emotions and beats of the music kind of fuel them. They even begged to listen to music of their choice for exams, but that is VERY forbidden by the testing business for fear of cheating. Oh well. Here is some proof that music helps work productivity. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/newsbysector/mediatechnologyandtelecoms/11179017/This-is-the-kind-of-music-you-should-listen-to-at-work.html
So, if I ruled education, not only would students "plug in to music", but start school later in the day. I recall leaving the house for high school at 6:30am, earlier if I was to catch the bus. Kids near the attendance boundaries catch the bus at 5:55am. I recall the pain and torture of waking up before dawn. I remember getting my desk rapped with a ruler, the whoosh of air mere nanometers from my face, in an attempt to wake me in AP French IV at 7:10am. And yet schools refuse to start high school later in the day, or even offering a tiered plan; students in sports or working can attend 7-2 and then the rest can attend 9-4, or students get to choose from the two. So many studies prove how biologically, teens don't function at 7am and need their sleep; their bodies working best when going to bed late and rising late. Here is but one study. http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2014/08/25/pediatricians-late-school-start-time-good-for-teens/14338565/ surely a late start time would benefit children and learning, so of course we do not do it. How else could we profit from academic intervention curriculum and medication to keep children happy, attentive, and alert at the crack of dawn? more about later start times
Somehow this relates to another link, http://online.wsj.com/articles/for-more-teens-arrests-by-police-replace-school-discipline-1413858602 which requires logging in to view buuuuuuut, basically it is about the criminalizing of being a child. How zero tolerance policies and crazy rules make school a literal police state. And yet other schools turn a blind eye to crime, making teachers document months of interventions and feel good chats before escalating things enough to contact the parents or principal. Therefore students either end up ruling the school with misbehavior, or become too frightened to move. Ruling the school in misbehavior begets more interventions and the like, all ways to waste money and get nowhere so you can perpetuate the schools are in trouble idealogy. (Granted it is a real idealogy but no one in power wishes to fix the problem.) Or you can break down the student and use fear to coerce them into compliance.