By Michael Burke, EdSource, June 11, 2020
A movement to reform California public school policing and drastically rethink school safety is quickly gaining momentum amid nationwide protests against police brutality following the killing of George Floyd.
In Los Angeles, Oakland, Sacramento and San Francisco, administrators and school boards are under pressure from community groups who are renewing demands for police-free schools and calling on districts to instead hire more counselors and other student support services. In some cases, including in Oakland and San Francisco, those ideas are now winning the support of majorities of school board members.
California State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Thurmond at a press conference on Wednesday said he understands why “many are questioning why there should be police on campuses.” He said the California Department of Education is currently looking into standards for training school police officers, adding that he supports increased implicit bias training for officers.