Statement: We Applaud Minneapolis Public School Board’s Resolution to Cut Ties With Minneapolis Police Department and Urge All School Districts to Follow Suit
On Friday, May 29, Minneapolis Public School Board Director Josh Pauly announced he drafted a resolution to end their contract with the Minneapolis Police Department (MPD), following the University of Minnesota’s decision to end their contract with MPD earlier this week. This came swiftly after the brutal murder of George Floyd, a 46-year-old Black man, at the hands of Minneapolis police officers on Monday, May 25. Advancement Project National Office and Alliance for Educational Justice applaud the school board’s initiative to ensure that students attending Minneapolis public schools are safe from the threat of police violence, and we look forward to the resolution passing at the school board meeting on Tuesday. This resolution represents a critical first step toward building a future with #PoliceFreeSchools.
“The same police that killed George Floyd, and the same police that tear gas peaceful protesters demanding justice for his murder, are the same police brutalizing students in schools,” said Jonathan Stith, National Director of the Alliance for Educational Justice. “We believe justice for Black students and students of color looks like #PoliceFreeSchools. Before we return to “normal” school post-COVID-19, we must demand an end to the pandemic of police violence in our schools.”
We encourage school districts nationwide to follow this powerful lead, and end all contracts with local law enforcement, indefinitely. Youth organizations across the country such as Philadelphia Student Union, Brighton Park Neighborhood Council of Chicago, IL, Freedom Inc., in Madison, WI, and many others, understand how crucial it is to abolish police presence in schools, and have been urging this kind of radical movement across school boards for years.
“Minneapolis Public Schools District has had a long history of pushing Black and Brown students into the school-to-prison pipeline. It is an important corrective step forward for the school board to recognize that MPD has shown that they cannot be trusted and should not be in schools. There have been too many examples across the country of police violence against students in our school hallways and criminalization of students of color. All school districts should heed the moment,” said Judith Browne Dianis, Executive Director of Advancement Project National Office. “The time for #PoliceFreeSchools is now.”
We, along with our grassroots partners, support this resolution and encourage the Minneapolis school board to vote for #PoliceFreeSchools on Tuesday, June 2.