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The Oakland Unified School District Board voted to abolish police from it’s schools and has instructed the superintendent to take the necessary steps to ensure the removal of the police officers.
The Board utilized data collected over the past several years that demonstrates black students account for 73 percent of arrest between the school years 2015-2016 to 2019-2020. Black students only make up 26 percent of the student body.
The board feels that by having police officers in Oakland schools they restrict the black community’s access to graduation and opportunity.
“This moment is a culmination of years of hard-fought advocacy, youth and family leadership and community work. We are overwhelmed with emotion and filled with gratitude for this historic win,”
– The Black Organizing Project
The board has also mandated that all staff with the Oakland Unified School District obtain training in implicit bias, antiracism, and culturally responsive supports.
Oakland is just one of many school districts across the country that have chosen to remove police from their schools. It will be interesting to see how the decision to remove police from schools plays out in the 2020-2021 academic year and what ramifications will result from their reactive decisions.