Unblock Spotify on school computers

Unblock Spotify on school computers

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Gaby Aragon started this petition to Southern Lehigh School District Leaders

As many would definitely already know, there are things blocked on our school computers for good reasons: websites that are inappropriate, apps that are distracting, and games that are time consuming. In the same situation, there are also things that aren't blocked: apps such as maps, reminders, and iTunes and websites that we obviously need to use on a day to day basis.


I would like to shift your focus to one thing that isn't blocked on our laptops: iTunes. Similarly to other apps we have access to on our laptops, we can use them for numerous things: notes both on our phones and laptops, photos on the same two devices, and iTunes for both school and at home use. As you most likely already know, there are some classes that use iTunes. One personal example I can provide is using iTunes to export a self-made song in 8th grade. You can also use iTunes to listen to music, provided you have an Apple music/iTunes account with music you have personally paid for.


I have talked with many other students in the past (going on) 4 years that I've attended Southern Lehigh and I've come to a consensus that many feel we should be able to use Spotify on our school computers. We understand that it is a privilege and not a right but there is an overwhelming number of students who have not abused the privilege to have a school computer in their pssession. Spotify is extremely similar to iTunes; in the sense that it can only be used to listen to music. We are allowed to have iTunes and many students appreciate having that privilege but there are many students who do not use iTunes and instead use Spotify. iTunes cannot be used to listen to music for free whereas Spotify can be used without having a paid subscription. As of February 2020, Apple had around 70 million paid customers and Spotify had an overwhelming 130 million users. With the numerical proof that there are mose Spotify users in comparison to Apple Music, it would make sense to give students the ability to use it.


Studies have shown the benefits of music on learning, growth, and how music increases focus as well as productivity. According to several scientific studies, music increases memory as well. Not only does it provide developmental benefits, it also makes working more fun. One study concluded that a group of students between the ages of 13 and 17 answered more questions correctly on a math worksheet while listening to music and were also interestingly more focused in comparison to when they completed the same worksheet without music


Furthermore, the Southern Lehigh High School Handbook (in regards to the "One-to-One Laptop Initiative") follows the guidelines of the Children Internet Protection Act (CIPA) to filter websites that may be deemed as inappropriate and harmful to student's learning. Both CIPA and the handbook state that school provided technology should be used for educational and academic purposes only. Spotify does not violate any of the Southern Lehigh High School Handbook and CIPA rules. From a lawful perspective, Spotify might be misused but if a student is misusing this given privilege, they should individually be punished (just like how things are dealt with when students misuse school computers). As stated in the SLHS Handbook, students "are allowed to use the music functionality of their cell phone with earphones only." If given the privilege to listen to music on our phones, it would eliminate the excessive need to look at our phones every five seconds to change and/or adjust our music while in a class environment. All websites and technology (such as cell phones) used within a class are subject to a teachers approval. If a teacher doesn't want their students using their phones to listen to music, this gives student's another opportunity while complying with the teacher's rules and regulations within their classrooms. 


Please help unblock Spotify. Share this with fellow Southern Lehigh students who are struggling with school during these especially difficult times. If you have anything to add in the comments, feel free to do so as long as it is helpful and useful to this cause. 

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