#CopsOutOfCCSD - Remove Police from Charleston County Schools!

#CopsOutOfCCSD - Remove Police from Charleston County Schools!

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Carolina Youth Action Project started this petition to Charleston County School Board and

Safer Schools Without SROs is one of two youth-centered campaigns by the Carolina Youth Action Project's Youth Leaders, an alliance of unstoppable girls, trans youth, and gender non-conforming youth who believe another world is possible. They have teamed up with teachers, students, and several other concerned folks living in Charleston County to demand that the Charleston County Council and School Board defund and remove police from Charleston County Schools. We demand that the funds be invested in student and teacher supports such as mental health counselors, student concern specialists, school psychologists, guidance counselors, crisis intervention specialists, and student/parent advocates who are extensively trained in restorative practices, trauma-informed care, and anti-oppressive youth work. We also demand the incorporation of engaging, culturally responsive and anti-racist curricula.

Consistent research on school policing has spoken loud and clear: The presence of police in schools does not translate to a safe environment for students, especially for Black, Brown, queer and trans students and students with disabilities. For students who are a part of marginalized groups, school policing equates to fear, violence, and unnecessary criminalization. School policing, and policing in general, is rooted in anti-Black fear, surveillance of “the other”, and carceral systems. School policing results in violence, an over-reliance on punitive measures, increased school dropouts, a distrust of education systems, and most of all the School-to-Prison Pipeline. 

During the 2014-2015 school year, in Charleston County, 26 out of 29, or 90 percent, of elementary school students who were arrested were Black. During that same school year, 358 out of 410, or 87 percent, of middle school students who were arrested were Black. The Advancement Project asserts that, “Research shows that higher discipline rates for students of color are not due to higher rates of misbehavior, but instead due to systemic racism”. In most cases, Black and Brown students are arrested for age-appropriate behaviors that are incorrectly placed in criminal categories such as “disorderly conduct” and “disturbing schools”. 

In the wake of a national outcry for justice, greater equity, and the removal of police, as a citizen of this beautiful city, we urge Charleston County Council to remove funding from ALL police in Charleston County School District, and invest in more student and teacher supports that cultivate an environment of learning and thriving, instead of conditioning our students to survive in prisons.

Several school districts across the country have taken the necessary steps to defund and remove police from schools such as Minneapolis Public Schools, Portland Public Schools (Oregon), Portland Public Schools (Maine), Greensboro Schools (Guilford County - NC), Oakland Schools, and Denver Public Schools!

We believe schools are safer without SROs. We refuse to normalize the presence of police officers in schools. We believe students should feel safe, supported, and cared for rather than fearful of harassment or arrest. We reject the use of punitive practices that funnel students into the School to Prison Pipeline and reinforce the existence and expansion of the prison system.

Let’s do the right thing for the students of Charleston County!

0 have signed. Let’s get to 1,500!
At 1,500 signatures, this petition is more likely to get picked up by local news!