Do the students at Centreville High have enough privacy? This is a question that I would have never asked, had I not been placed in my current History class. In this particular class, we are required to roll up our sleeves and show the teacher our arms before an exam. This is a measure that supposedly prevents cheating, but my question is whether it invades the privacy of students.
Recent community studies have shown that roughly 33% of adolescents perform Non-Suicidal Self Injury, or NSSI. If any self injury marks are revealed by this procedure, a student’s mental health would be at risk. While students who do practice NSSI should seek help, this is not the method by which their mental health issues should be revealed, especially not in front their peers.
This practice has the potential, if continued, to further harm students that already need help. If a mentally unstable student is subject to such a public embarrassment, you never know how they may react. Students may escalate behavior to suicidal tendencies, or they may practice self harm more frequently. For what? To prevent cheating?
While this could be considered a noble effort to prevent cheating, students today usually don’t write on their arms to cheat. Instead, students use their phones, or they just ask their friends for answers. The system of checking students’ arms for their dishonesty is simply outdated. The risk of harming students’ mental health is simply much greater than the benefit of preventing cheating through this method.