I am writing about the need to keep children safe in schools. In relation to the gun debate, some are calling for more guns and more police in schools. Personally, I see police in schools as a negative.
I'd prefer that resources be spent to expand our Restorative Justice program from our high school to our middle schools. Restorative Justice is an alternative to suspension. At a recent public forum, held at the Cora Kelly School, numerous parents came out to speak in favor of Restorative Justice. The crowd at that event represented the many races and ethnicities of our city. There was a remarkable lack of dissent. There was broad concern that punitive approaches disproportionately affect students of color.
In other public forums, I've heard similar comments with regards to police in schools. As I see it, the best way to avoid the situation where punishment is meted out disproportionately to students of color is to get rid of punitive approaches. I want my tax dollars go to experts on children, not experts on punishment. Let us please get the police out of our schools.