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Safety Law News for February 12, 2019

February 13, 2019

• In California, the Salinas City Elementary School District, for the third time, rejected a school resource officer program.  The 4-0 vote, with one abstention, reflects the community’s disapproval of the presence of police on their campuses.  One board member is opposed to the access police will have to student information if the district implements a program.

• In Maryland, the Baltimore City School Board is discussing again the issue of whether police officers should be armed inside schools during the school day, something the school board has unanimously rejected.  The campus shooting of a special education teacher by a visitor to the school on February 8, 2019, is spurring calls for a new policy.  The unarmed school police officer had to call for help.

• In Massachusetts, officials in Worcester are reporting that juvenile arrests continue to trend down for males and females as well as for all racial and ethnic groups.  School-based arrests have also declined. The Superintendent attributes the decrease to three factors: school resource officers who have developed positive relationships with students and staff; prior misreporting of arrests statistics; and a policy change that made disrupting a school assembly a nonarrestable offense.  The results are consistent with the Worcester Youth Violence and Prevention Strategic Plan.

• In Georgia, the legislature has approved a midyear budget adjustment that increases funding for school safety.  It allocates $30,000 for each public school in the state for increased security measures, including school resource officers. It also includes over $8 million for mental health resources. 

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