Conversations about use of police in schools have once again gained momentum, as the police killings of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor renewed attention to structural racism across the nation. Challenging the role of police in schooling is not new; students of color in particular have led these conversations for decades. In recent years, some districts have reduced reliance on police while others have increased police presence in response to high-profile school violence.
Recently, several large school districts across the country, including Minneapolis, Milwaukee, Portland, Denver, and Oakland, have decided to remove police from schools. Similar conversations are happening across Pennsylvania. This series from Research for Action’s PACER project is designed to inform these conversations for Pennsylvania policymakers, school leaders, and other stakeholders.
The series includes three policy briefs to:
▶ Synthesize existing research about the impact of police presence in schools on school safety.
▶ Examine available data to better understand the extent of police presence in Pennsylvania schools.
▶ Discuss promising alternative models to improve school safety without reliance on policing.
RFA is grateful to The Heinz Endowments for its generous support of the
Pennsylvania Clearinghouse for Education Research (PACER) project.