Boston Schools Review Says To Examine Bringing Back Police In Schools

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BOSTON (WBZ NewsRadio) — Safety at Boston Public Schools is in the spotlight, and an independent consultant says the district needs to explore a few ways to beef up security. That includes the possibility of bringing back police officers on school campuses.

The district asked the Washington-based Council of the Great City Schools to review its safety situation, and the organization's suggestions were unveiled at a School Committee meeting on Wednesday night.

The review from the non-profit said BPS should form a focus group to consider a sworn, internal police department for Boston Public Schools. Officers in BPS buildings were replaced with "Safety Specialists" in 2021. The specialists have no arrest powers.

Some city councilors have become increasingly concerned with school safety in recent months. Four including City Council President Ed Flynn sent a letter to the mayor and Boston Superintendent Mary Skipper earlier this month.

Any move to bring police officers back into schools could face opposition from Mayor Michelle Wu and some city activists, who have opposed the idea in the past. The report from the Council on the Great City Schools had other recommendations, including a hotline to report bad behavior and increased information sharing between BPS and the Boston Police. The report also pointed to morale issues in the Safety Services department.

In response, Superintendent Mary Skipper said the district had made progress on some of the safety goals in the past year, like addressing the morale problems and expanding security recruitment.

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