Sign this petition to remove police from american schools and reinvest in counselling and student support
While there are no studies that show that police in schools are helping to protect students, there is clear data that police in schools are harming students and grossly contributing to the prevalence of the school-to-prison pipeline. According to PBS, in the 2013-2014 school year, about 8,000 schools in the United States reported about 70,000 arrests (PBS, 2017). Not only does this contribute to the overpopulation of prisons and an increase in juvenile arrests, but having police in schools also contributes to greater levels of police violence. In 2019, at Fremont High School in Los Angeles, students reported police using pepper spray on them to break up a fight. In the same year, an officer at a school in North Carolina “repeatedly slammed an 11-year-old boy to the ground” (Goldestein, 2020).
There are “1.7 million students attending schools with police officers but no counselors, 3 million students attending schools with officers but no nurses, 6 million with police officers and no school psychologists and 10 million students in schools with officers but no social workers” (ACLU, 2020). While the United States Department of Education recommends that there be one school counsellor for every 250 students, only three states meet this ratio (ACLU, 2020). The immense budget that is currently allocated to police presence in schools needs to be re-allocated to supporting the mental and physical wellbeing of students through student support programs, nurses, psychologists and counsellors.
A police-free education system is not only possible but essential as the negative effects of police in schools continue to outweigh the feeling of security police presence is intended to provide. To protect students, reduce juvenile arrests and limit the increasing prison population, we must ensure that our representatives put an end to policing in schools.
Sign this petition to demand that police be removed from schools.
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