FL Schools Should Reallocate $ from Police to School-based Mental Health

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Our priorities are wrong.  Policing does nothing to support the needs of youth. We ask the FL legislature to reallocate investments in school policing to greater school-based mental health support for youth. Here's why: 

  • 1 in 5 youth in schools will have significant mental health needs.
  • Only 20% of youth will access the mental health services they need.
  • In the last year, police presence in FL schools increased 97%.
  • There are currently 13 districts with police, but no school psychologists and 17 districts with police but no school social worker. 
  • There are now significantly more police in schools than school psychologists and school social workers. 
  • The state spent nearly double the amount on school safety than they devoted to school mental health.
  • As a result, we saw a nearly 10% increase in school-based arrests while community-based arrests for youth decreased.
  • This reverses a multi-year trend where school-based arrests were on the decline.
  • Additionally, the state has put police who have very little training in mental health in charge of involuntary crisis admissions for youth.