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Students Score Deals During School on Cyber Monday

Students+couldn%27t+pass+up+the+opportunity+to+shop+during+class+time+on+the+Monday+after+Thanksgiving.
Students couldn't pass up the opportunity to shop during class time on the Monday after Thanksgiving.

Students couldn't pass up the opportunity to shop during class time on the Monday after Thanksgiving.

Photo courtesy of http://www.thedailychronic.net.

Photo courtesy of http://www.thedailychronic.net.

Students couldn't pass up the opportunity to shop during class time on the Monday after Thanksgiving.

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Which is more important, your education or a sale for 50% off? Many Benjamin students thought that the sale was more important which is why, instead of paying attention in class, some students decided to go shopping on Monday, November 27 – Cyber Monday. Few teachers realized this was happening, and so none of the students were punished. Once students realized they were not going to get in trouble, some of them decided to shop to their hearts’ content.

One anonymous eighth grader was very happy with her shopping. “I was able to buy two necklaces and one bracelet from Pura Vida,” she said. “The bracelet and the necklaces were fifty percent off, and so I got I basically got two for the price of one.”

Cyber Monday, the Monday after Thanksgiving when online retailers provide consumers with major sales, continues to grow in America, and the evidence goes beyond The Benjamin Middle School.  

Cyber Monday has recently even become more prominent than Black Friday. According to financial advice website, thebalance.com, Black Friday sales have had continual growth over the past ten years, about 4% growth each year, but Cyber Monday has been more profitable. According to an October 27 forbes.com article by Deborah Weinswig, “In 2016, Cyber Monday was the largest online sales day in history, according to Adobe data: shoppers spent a record $3.39 billion online on Cyber Monday last year, up 10.2% year over year and surpassing the Black Friday online sales total of $3.34 billion.”

Students at The Benjamin School participated in the Cyber Monday trend this year, which created problems during class.

The first teacher to realize students were participating in online shopping was Science Department Chair and eighth-grade science teacher Ms. Gabriele St. Martin. “I noticed [online shopping] during my A period class and I sent a heads up to the other teachers,” she said. “Honestly, I forgot it was Cyber Monday.” Even though St. Martin sent teachers an email about online shopping, the administration did not feel it was a major problem.

“We really do trust our students, there’s an honor code here and the kids are really good, so I don’t think a lot of kids were doing it,” said Head of Middle School Mr. Charles Hagy. “If they were, it was at a down time or at break or at lunch when they had more free time. If they were, I wouldn’t expect them to be sent to the office for shopping in class: I would expect a teacher to say, ‘Hey, can you stop doing that now and pick that up at a more appropriate time?,’ and if the students continued, it becomes a discipline problem, but the vast majority of our students would stop.”

Hagy’s ideas proved to be right as no students were sent to the office, but some teachers felt they had to take steps towards preventing the students from shopping.

“I arrange the chairs so I can see all of the computer screens, so no students will be cyber shopping today in my classes, besides the two or three people [who did so] in my A period,” said St. Martin on the afternoon of Cyber Monday. Even though she tried to prevent shopping, some students were still able to shop in class. “I bought two shirts from endclothing.com, and I bought shoes from Flight Club,” said an eighth grader who wished to remain anonymous. “The shirts were like $110 each, both 20 percent off, so they were like 80 something. The shoes weren’t off: getting the shirts just got me in the mood to buy other things,” said the eighth grader..

Another fellow eighth grader was also able to score some discounts during school on Monday. “I didn’t really do [as] much Cyber Monday shopping as I usually do, but I bought two hoodies from Urban Outfitters that were half off,” said the student.

This is not the first time students have been caught shopping online during school hours. Three years ago, there was a problem with students ordering food online which they had delivered to them outside during the school’s lunch periods. Mr. Hagy soon put a stop to that practice, but because Cyber Monday only comes once a year, maybe the administration doesn’t yet view it as a major disruption to the school day.

Students definitely took advantage of the fact that teachers either forgot about Cyber Monday or weren’t privy to their web browsing that day. As Cyber Monday continues to become more popular, The Benjamin School faculty needs to take action to keep students on task in class and prevent them from shopping, no matter how big the discounts are.

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Students Score Deals During School on Cyber Monday