Politics don’t have any business being in the classroom, period. Parents are sick and tired of their children being subjected to other peoples’ agendas under the guise of public education. I’m also tired of it, and that’s one of the biggest reasons I’m running for Beaverton School District Board of Directors, Zone 1. My goal is to give a louder voice to parents who have had enough.
Perhaps the biggest example of this right now is the push to eliminate School Resource Officers (SROs). It’s entirely political, exists to serve other, larger outside agendas, and does absolutely nothing to help students in school.
Events that occurred last summer became national in scope and have been hijacked as an excuse to push controversial topics like Critical Race Theory onto our students. It’s being done in such a way as to appear innocuous at first. But upon closer examination, this movement is accompanied by clear goals and objectives that are completely unrelated to its stated purposes.
A kneejerk reaction to issues surrounding law enforcement should not be used as a justification to needlessly kick SROs out of our schools.
Here at the local level, the Beaverton School District has long enjoyed productive, mutually beneficial relationships with both the Washington County Sheriff’s Office and the Beaverton Police Department. There is literally no reason to jeopardize that for the sake of appeasing political radicals who have issues with police due to the actions of individual officers whose behavior is beyond the norms of their profession.
Other school districts have caved to the pressure and taken steps to eliminate their SROs. Those include the Salem-Keizer, Portland, and David Douglas districts.
As the Zone 1 representative on the Beaverton School District Board, I intend to oppose taking the same approach.
The fact of the matter is that SROs provide positive support and influence, both of which are sorely needed on our school campuses. Aside from that influence, their presence enhances safety, as well as a deterrence to bad actors and activities that could harm our students and should be kept away from public schools.
Children who are in middle and high school are particularly vulnerable and susceptible to peer pressure and bad influences. The teen years are around the time that they are first exposed to things like drugs and alcohol. Depending on where they’re going to school, this is also when they can be recruited into gang membership.
Having SROs on campus reduces the likelihood of students becoming involved in those kinds of harmful behaviors. Much in the same way that de-fund the police movements are resulting in skyrocketing crime and violence in the jurisdictions that adopted those policies, removing SROs from schools is an open invitation for those elements to dominate campuses.
I will not bow to political pressure to expose our children to additional risks. I will not demonize police officers to appease vocal activist groups that represent small groups of people. Nor will I ever choose the presence of gangs and their members over those of our dedicated law enforcement professionals. Our schools, parents, and students, deserve far better than that.