Police in schools deter crime, ensure those who want to learn feel safe

Schools often continue to serve as a breeding ground for gang violence. Armed security guards and metal detectors remain as necessary as textbooks and a cafeteria.

SHARE Police in schools deter crime, ensure those who want to learn feel safe
A student’s parent confronts a police officer after alleging that he hit his son outside Roberto Clemente Community Academy on Nov. 19, 2021 after police were called for back-up in response to fights in the school.

A student’s parent confronts a police officer after alleging that he hit his son outside Roberto Clemente Community Academy on Nov. 19, 2021 after police were called in response to fights in the school.

Pat Nabong/Sun-Times

I have been a Chicago police officer and detective for almost three decades. I have had a front row seat to the violence and inhumanity that occurs in this city on a daily basis. The Chicago Public Schools have never been a safe haven from the crime that plagues the surrounding neighborhoods.

While I would agree that there has been some headway made in quelling the violence in schools without theneed for police, schools often continue to serve as a breeding ground for gang violence, much as the streets of the most violent neighborhoods do. Armed security guards and metal detectors remain as necessary as textbooks and a cafeteria.

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For years, police have acted not only as a visible deterrent to those who may commit crimes in school, but also as a comfort to those who are actually in school to learn and want to feel safe while doing do.

While your editorial on alternatives to policing has some merit, you failed to mention the most important thing in any student’s life and their chances at success: a support system that includes involved parents or other caregivers to keep these kids on the right path.

Too many of these kids are “raised by the streets” with no parents or other positive influences. This is what causes the school-to-prison pipeline.

While I can agree that training for school officers is lacking and some officers are ill-prepared to deal with the challenges of inner-city schools, discipline and respect start at home.

Joseph Bowes, Mt. Greenwood

Children’s safety

I have heard all kinds of ridiculous statements and outright lies from politicians in the last six years. But Sarah Huckabee Sanders made the most ridiculous. After Roe vs. Wade was overturned, she said “we can now make sure our children can be as safe in the womb as they are in classrooms.”

John H. Egan, Palos Park

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