Arlington, VA – If you think you may be a victim of a school district’s school resource officer (SRO) program, you are not alone.
Many parents are concerned about their children’s education when they are sent to schools with the controversial “trick,” a tool that sends children to jail indefinitely for being absent for school.
The school resource officers (SROs) program began in the United States in 2010.
It is widely believed that it helps educate kids and families, and it can be used to target children for disciplinary actions such as truancy or truancy related suspensions, which are a form of child abuse.
In order to be eligible for the program, children must be enrolled in a school for at least 60 days during the school year.
Some states have implemented similar programs to help with the growing number of students being expelled from school, or to teach students about bullying prevention, but some parents are also concerned that school districts are using it as a tool to target students for suspensions.
According to a recent report by the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), in 2016, more than 1.5 million students were sent to jail, with a record of 2,924 students being sent to the Virginia Department of Corrections (VDC).
The majority of students who are sent back to school are from low-income families.
A 2016 NCES report states that the number of school districts sending children to prison is increasing.
“The number of schools in Virginia sending students to prison for a variety of disciplinary infractions, including truancy, is on the rise, and the school district is now using the school resource offices’ (SROP) tool to send these students to detention,” said NCES senior research fellow Robert Dolan.
“We believe this is part of a broader trend of school district targeting students for disciplinary infraction and detention.”
When NCES asked the school districts for information about the use of the tool, they provided a number of examples of schools using the tool.
When the school was asked about the policy, one school district in Virginia responded by saying, “it’s standard practice in Virginia.
This is not unusual.”
Another school district that responded with the following statement said, “I have a policy in place to remove children from school at the request of a parent or guardian.”
The schools stated that they do not use the tool as a way to send students home or send students into foster care.
As reported by the Washington Post, a 2016 NCE study found that almost all schools in the state use the system to target for expulsion students who violate school discipline.
Although the school is not required to report the number and type of students sent to detention, the NCES study found “at least 1,200 children are sent away from school each year for disciplinary reasons.”
In addition to sending students away, schools are also using the SROP to target parents and children who do not attend school, and many of those students are from poor families.
In the report, NCES found that the majority of schools that use the SRO program to send children to detention are located in low- and moderate-income communities.
For example, the Virginia Tech Student Health Center, a private, for-profit school that was named one of the top 10 most troubled public schools in America in 2015, was named a “high risk school” by the Virginia Education Association in 2014.
Virginia Tech, located in Blacksburg, Virginia is located in a high crime area.
It has been named by the FBI as one of five schools with a high incidence of students arrested for truancy.
More than half of the students that are sent out of Blacksburg are from the Virginia’s largest school district.
In 2016, Blacksburg Unified School District (BUSD) was ranked number three in the nation in terms of suspensions for truance, according to NCES.
Another high-ranking school in Blacksburys district is the Alexandria School District.
In 2014, it was ranked by NCES as one out of four schools that had the most students arrested.
The school district has been under a federal investigation since 2008 for failing to adequately monitor students.
On March 8, 2017, the US Supreme Court decided that the US District Court of Washington should hear a lawsuit brought by parents and students challenging the use and misuse of the SROs tool.
The court heard arguments in the case March 7.
A group of parents, attorneys and community members, including the National Association of School Boards, the National Alliance on Mental Illness, the American Federation of Teachers and other organizations are expected to be in the courtroom on Thursday to argue that the use by school districts of the school resources officer tool violates the rights of students.