In December of 2020, Massachusetts passed its “Police Reform Law” in response to BLM protests and calls to “abolish the police.” The law would have required school police officers to undergo 350 hours of very expensive, specialized training in order to keep their positions in their school districts. Almost all of the schools in the Boston School District chose to instead cut their cops loose and replace them with “school safety specialists” who don’t carry handcuffs or firearms and who do not have the authority to arrest students. This left teachers and administrators with no choice other than calling 911 when trouble broke out.
To the great surprise of many of the activists pushing for “police reform” (but really not to anyone else with an IQ above room temperature) incidents of many sorts of crime in the city’s public schools began to rise almost immediately. That trend continued throughout 2021 and it’s still being seen today. Most of the incidents involved fighting and assaults, but there were even instances of guns showing up in schools and sexual assaults. Now the city is facing a thorny question as to whether or not to bring the police back on campus. (Boston Globe)
With no school-employed officers, it has fallen on regular police and the city’s school police unit to handle emergencies at schools in the neighborhoods they patrol. Between the first day of school and Thanksgiving break, the most recent 911 call data available from Boston Public Schools, police responded to 177 incidents at 62 schools across the city.
More than one-quarter of the 911 calls were for incidents involving fighting or assault. And these emergency calls represent only the most serious issues. Teachers, deans, and school safety specialists reported more than 4,000 other incidents to school administrators from September through November, which can range from disrupting class to cutting school or trespassing.
During the entire 2019-2020 school year, there were 951 recorded incidents where campus police had to intervene. Thus far in the 2021-2022 school year, there have been nearly 800 already with several months to go. And officials interviewed for this report believe the number could be much higher because not all incidents wind up being recorded in the school’s recordkeeping system like they were when campus police had to document everything in the school’s system.
Can anyone honestly say they are surprised by these results? Public schools, particularly in urban area high schools, always have some number of kids that are going to cause trouble. Also, gangs regularly recruit high school students and groom them for a life of criminal activities. Those kids will be the most likely to cause trouble, assuming they show up for class at all.
When there is an officer hanging around posing the possibility of an armed response and some time in juvenile hall, the bad apples are less likely to act out. When the only responsible adult in the area is a “safety specialist” with a clipboard, the incentive to hold back on their poor impulses is greatly diminished. In fact, you’re probably putting the safety specialist in danger of becoming another victim of assault.
Did the schools really need this to be pointed out to them? Shouldn’t anyone with an ounce of common sense have already known that this would happen? If parents and teachers have questions about this dangerous trend, they should be taking those questions directly to their woke legislators who passed the “Police Reform Law” in the first place. In cities across the country, we’ve seen over and over again what happens when you try to defund or abolish the police. And it hasn’t been a pretty picture. Perhaps the families in and around Boston can keep this in mind when they go to the polls this November.