Johnathen Sweeney 0

End the Cincinnati Public Schools-Cincinnati Police Relationship

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Since the murder of George Floyd by a Minneapolis police officer, our country has been engulfed with protests. Hundreds of cities, hundreds of protests, millions of protesters. We are grappling with the role of police in our society, including our schools.

As such, the Minneapolis Public Schools voted to end its relationship with the Minneapolis Police. Three districts in Portland terminated their School Resource Officer program. Denver Public Schools is reassessing its relationship with the Denver Police. It is expected more school districts will follow suit.

Currently, CPS has a School Resource Officer (SRO) Program.

Per a 2019 CPS pdf, "School Resource Officers are Cincinnati Police officers assigned to work daily in Cincinnati Public Schools. Currently, 15 School Resource Officers (SROs) provide law-enforcement services to CPS’ students, predominantly in our high schools with some presence in our elementary schools."

The CPS SRO Program was established in 1967 and is the third oldest such program in Ohio.

However, due to recent discourse of the systemic racism and power abused across the policing system, it high appropriate for CPS to reassess and terminate its relationship with the Cincinnati Police Department.

The School to Prison Pipeline is already a huge issue. And the criminalization of student behavior is one of the biggest factors. And research shows that SROs, and the close knit relationship police departments and school districts in general, is a big part of that criminalization.

CPS demographics are already made up of a variety of vulnerable communities. The district is 62% Black, 7% Hispanic, with only 23% White non Hispanics. Additionally, 81% are economically disadvantaged, 20% have a at least one disability, and and 6% are English learners.

So, CPS, do the right thing. Terminate your SRO program. Your students, who are overwhelmingly vulnerable enough as it is, need it.

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