Congressman Tom Reed reintroduced a bill that would provide more federal funding for school resource officers, saying, “I wanted to put my name to this bill, especially this week, to say we prioritize the safety of our schools.”
Reed says he’s supporting the bipartisan bill to direct funding towards school resource officers because kids should feel safe in school.
“School resource officers are vital in establishing school safety and we use these funds to hire police officers to be in our school to develop relationships and not only take on threats,” said Reed.
Some parents like Ericka Simmons say they’re not convinced this is the answer for safety, and in urban districts, those relationships being developed between officers and kids are not always postive.
“I think sometimes they’re being called for unneccesary disturbances of children. They’re being used to bring a child away and using their authority in a negative manner,” said Simmons.
Simmons says it’s a stress on the kids, and that issues in a school should not be dealt with the way they would be on the street, adding that there are bigger issues.
“Why do we need more funding to keep them in the schools? I think that money could be used elsewhere. I just really hope that if this does go forward, that money is being used not to just pay for more officers but to pay for them to have a positive impact on the students they’re engaging with,” said Simmons.
— ROCHESTER FIRST