This article was originally published in The Notebook. In August 2020, The Notebook became Chalkbeat Philadelphia.
A new report by the Advancement Project and the Alliance for Educational Justice says that police should not be stationed in schools.
The two advocacy groups believe that school police officers create hostile environments for black and brown students and contribute to the trauma that many students experience outside of school.
Philadelphia was among the cities featured in the report.
For some city parents, though, the idea of removing school police officers is just unthinkable.
Terri Seward, whose daughter attends Bartram High School in Southwest Philadelphia, isn’t buying the argument that school police create a prison-like atmosphere. She said those officers are a necessity.
“It’s a little bit comforting to me to see [the] presence of police here,” she said. “I would want to see them here. And that’s because of the environment that we live in. Unfortunately, that’s where we are.”
Robin Roberts, an active parent at Carver High School of Engineering & Science, agreed with the report’s findings that school police officers can present a false sense of security while criminalizing students.
She said that keeping the peace in schools has a different meaning for some students.