Wash. teachers’ union against reinstating SROs on K-12 campuses

The debate over school resource officers was reignited after a student was shot and killed at a high school earlier this month

By Ashley Silver

BELLEVUE, Wash. — Members of a teachers’ union have passed a formal resolution against bringing back school resource officers on K-12 campuses.

According to KOMO News, union representatives said they’d rather use funds to have more mental and behavioral health professionals added to schools. Earlier this year, the Bellevue school district announced that SROs would be reintroduced into the schools, with an original goal of fall 2022.

The debate over SROs in schools was reignited after a student was shot and killed at Ingraham High School earlier this month. Many gathered to discuss the issue at a community forum last week.

“I felt like when he (a community resource officer) was there, there was always somebody to talk to,” a former student said during the meeting.

Jill Rock, president of the Bellevue Education Association, was asked if she thought officers made students feel safer: “An officer could make students feel safer. We just really want to focus on preventative measures. Again, I really want to focus on the future and where we are headed. What is supportive for kids when kids go to school? Do they feel safe? Do they feel like they can talk to an adult, that they can lean in on?”

The district will hold three additional meetings to discuss whether or not officers will be brought back on campus. The Bellevue Police Department is also conducting a survey and will collect data for the district.

RELATED: Ala. school district considers hiring more SROs after Texas shooting

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