On September 10th, we organized a day of action to advocate for police free schools in Waterbury and we were met with obstinacy from city leaders as well as rain, lots of it. A small but fierce crowd assembled at city hall in Waterbury to further the fight to get cops out of our schools. The revolution will not be rained out and we will be back to city hall soon. Just read Superintendent Ruffin’s and Chief Spagnolo’s responses and its easy to see how cold-hearted and misinformed they are.
“They serve as a very meaningful resource for us, for not only the safety of the schools, but also in developing alternative practices in working with our students to prevent discipline or arrests…”~Waterbury Superintendent Verna Ruffin
“Without SROs (School Resource Officers), potentially police would get called to schools more often…”~Police Chief Spagnolo
Their support for maintaining or increasing police activity in Waterbury schools is unprecedented and very concerning consider the number of school-based arrests in Waterbury schools.
Despite local and state agencies criticisms about their misuse of police in our schools the Waterbury Public Schools and the Waterbury Police Department continue to defend their practice of use police in our schools to manage student behavior. The results are clear and tons of research is being ignored about the negative outcomes produced by having police in schools, especially for Black and Brown students. Most recently the Connecticut Office of the Child Advocate concluded an investigation and the report was damning.
Senator Chris Murphy and Congresswoman Ayanna Pressely sent a video message for us to share at the press conference announcing their intentions to fight along side local organizations for police free schools as they push forward a piece of federal legislation that would prevent the use of federal funds for cops in schools.
Categories: Current Issues