6th Year Politics and Society – Survey

January 15, 2021

Dear Parent/Guardian,
Our names are James OʼBrien and Emma Kelly. We are two sixth year Politics and Society students in Malahide Community School. As part of our Leaving Cert exam and assessment we have selected the Citizenship Project titled ‘Investigate whether imposing an age restriction on smart phone ownership would be a protection or denial of childrenʼs rights.ʼ
We both discussed the options available and decided this project was a very worthwhile one as it gives us a framework to write to the Minister for Children with our findings and recommendations. As a subject matter we find this topic very relevant in Irish society today. The accessibility of children to smart phones and consequently social media and many online platforms exposes them immensely to the broader global environment. Letʼs be honest, we all rely on smart phones for everything from shopping, education, communication and social media. As young people ourselves, we want to research and gather published data and carry out our own primary research on this topic with a view to make sound recommendations to the Minister for Children and to a Childʼs Rights Organisation.
We have both witnessed how young people rely on smart phones, how they can affect people our age and younger, in particular how social media and online websites and appʼs can influence us. There is no doubt that having a smart phone has merits but these merits may have some risk, in particular for younger children. We have developed a plan to interview certain experts in psychology and from the legal profession to assist with our project.

To that end and as part of our investigation we would sincerely appreciate your input as a parent/guardian with the attached short survey. (See link below)
The results will help inform our recommendation to Roderic OʼGorman TD, the current Minister for Children, Equality, Disability and Youth and the Childrenʼs Rights Alliance who create reports and recommendations on issues pertaining to Childrenʼs Rights in Ireland.


Thanks in advance, James & Emma