Group that pushed to end SJ’s school contract with police seeks more student counselors

A coalition of students, parents, teachers and supporters within the San Jose Unified School District successfully pushed the school district to end a million dollar or more contract with the police department from San Jose last week, saying their fight was just beginning. I did.

Known as the San Jose Unified Equity Coalition, the coalition is now advocating the reinvestment of funds to hire more school counselors and programs that provide better reach to students in need.

“I’m really excited that San Jose Unified has finally (finished the contract), and I’m finally telling them because I’m not here to pat them on the back,” said Restorative Justice Practice. Said Ratya Fernandez, the person and founder. From the youth hype. “I’m glad they finally did what they needed to do, but this is not the end.”

The coalition wants the district council to pass Derrick Thunderlin’s resolution drafted during George Floyd’s protest last year before the students return to campus in August.

Sanderlin, a San Jose-based community leader, provided the next San Jose police officer with implicit bias training and procedural fairness training for three years, and was shot and injured by a rubber bullet from police on May 29, 2020. Did it. Police atrocities.

“It represents the amount that our community has tried to work with the PD of San Jose,” said Eduardo Validares, a high school teacher in San Jose and co-author of the resolution. .. “

Police were a terrifying campus presence for students, according to Baridales, and eliminating the police was a big step in preventing black and brown children from entering the criminal system for the first time.

“But we need an advisor-type support system that is an active security measure to address the real issues the country is working on,” he said.

The coalition said schools need to move towards non-punitive responses and understand why students are taking action.

“If you ask these questions about what happens to your students, you will see it,” Fernandez says. “I haven’t eaten for over 12 hours. Last night I didn’t sleep because my younger siblings watched while my parents worked in three shifts. I didn’t wear clean clothes for two weeks. Hmm. “

She said that the students who take action are not of bad nature, but rather react to the trauma that comes from lack of access to resources.

The resolution redistributes funds previously used for police offerings to student support positions such as employment counselors, school social workers, psychologists and other mental and behavioral health professionals. I ask the school district.

The resolution is “a safety plan to help transform our school,” said Validares, who has two children in the district.

In a Friday letter announcing a vote to sack police from the campus, District Director Nancy Alvaran said the plan was having a negative impact, particularly on helping victims of assault and fighting fires. illegal fireworks. He said he was concerned about the possibility of giving.

As a result, she said, the district “will not have access to law enforcement support and will have to reduce or eliminate large-scale events for public safety purposes.”

Supporters of keeping police officers on campus also fear their off-campus presence could be detrimental in the event of active shooters or intruders.

Nisleen Eunice, chief lawyer for the juvenile division of the public defender’s office, said police did not need to be on campus to deal with criminal matters.

“The San Jose Police Department is ready to respond to any active shooter situation, whether or not there is a specific name program, on or off campus, as evidenced by the rapid response to recent events. It’s done, ”Younis said.

Rather, Eunice said the presence of police on campus led the district to rely on the police as a “one-stop-shop” for dealing with issues of pregnancy, domestic violence, e-cigarettes and LGBTQ.

“We know that most of these cases can be handled using educational methods that offer considerable discretion rather than the criminal law,” Younis said.

As a youth lawyer, she said she saw with her own eyes how the police on campus had long-term consequences.

Derrick Thunderlin’s resolution also calls for the adoption of ethnic studies classes on campus and the development of racist policies and trainings to end the school-to-prison pipeline.

“Ethnic studies are more than students studying non-white history and content,” said Evelyn Cervantes, a teacher at Hoover Junior High School and co-author of the resolution. “It explores and affirms every part of ourselves, analyzes the system we live in, practices how we participate in our community, shows solidarity, white supremacism and all” It is necessary to dismantle the “principle” . “”

In recent years, school districts in Santa Clara County have terminated their contracts with the police.

Last year, the Alum Rock Union District and the East Side Union High School District also voted against renewing their contracts with the city police.

Jana Kadah is a reporter for the Bay City News Service.

Group that pushed to end SJ’s school contract with police seeks more student counselors Source link Group that pushed to end SJ’s school contract with police seeks more student counselors


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