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The Chicago Board of Education voted Thursday to end its contract with Chicago police and remove uniformed officers from city schools.

The vote came at the end of a nearly eight-hour school board meeting in which teachers, students and elected city officials spoke.

The battle over whether to keep uniformed police officers in the 39 city schools where they continue to patrol, out of a total of 634 schools, has continued since police were assigned to protect schools in 1991.

Some students told school board members that police in schools scare them.

CHICAGO SCHOOL PRINCIPAL SAYS POLICE ARE IN SCHOOLS ‘WANTING THEM’ AFTER MAYOR SUPPORTED THEIR REMOVAL

Taft High School

The principal of Chicago’s Taft High School reportedly shared concerns about the potential decision, saying the safety of students and staff is paramount. (Google Maps)

Supporters of removing police from schools said officers targeted minorities and did not make schools safer.

Instead, the same supporters suggested that money spent on police patrols could be better spent.

Opponents of removing police from schools say officers made schools safer and told board members it should be up to each school to decide whether to have uniformed police on campus.

CHICAGO MAYOR APPROVED AFTER CITY APPROVES RESOLUTION REQUESTING A CEASEFIRE IN GAZA AS CRIME RISE

Chicago Police Department and Public Schools

Chicago Public Schools voted to eliminate school resource officers from the 39 schools where they still patrol. (Getty Images)

FOX 32 in Chicago reported that when the board cast its vote, it was in favor of a new “Comprehensive School Safety Policy,” which eliminates the use of school resource officers.

The official plan will be presented to board members for final approval over the summer and, if approved, will go into effect next school year.

“We want to be clear that many schools will continue to employ physical security personnel, such as security guards at entry points, crossing guards and Safe Passage workers to ensure students can get to and from school safely,” he said. the board in the letter obtained by the station. “Some schools will also continue to use physical security tools, such as security cameras or metal detectors. In addition, each school will continue to maintain a relationship with the local Chicago Police Department ‘School Sergeant,’ a position assigned to each police district to provide security support to schools.”

The board also reportedly said in the letter that funds used for uniformed officers in schools will be reallocated for “alternative security positions, resources and interventions,” such as restorative justice coordinators, youth intervention specialists, wraparound supports and programs. tutoring, and more. .

LIBERAL CHICAGO MAYOR Says REPARATIONS WILL REDUCE CRIME

Chicago police officers

Chicago police officer in uniform. (Brian Cassella/Chicago Tribune/Tribune News Service via Getty Images/File)

In early January, it was reported that the Chicago Board of Education was seeking to strip local school boards, organizations made up of parents, teachers and students, of their power to choose whether to have SROs in their schools. After withdrawing the decision from local councils, the board will remove all officials from school grounds, according to local media WBEZ.

Councilman Nicholas Sposato had reportedly already been told that CPS would not opt ​​out of renewing its contract with the Chicago Police Department.

The Illinois Policy Institute, a think tank that tracks policy decisions in the state, said: “Local school boards already have the power to remove officials, but district leaders are removing that local control.”

The Chicago Teachers Union (CTU) advocated for the removal of police officers from schools in 2020, amid the George Floyd protests.

“These students, along with the parents, teachers and staff who support them, have analyzed the data, experienced brutality and are calling for police-free schools,” the CTU said in a statement in June 2020.

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Some schools chose to remove officers from their campuses in 2020. William Taft Howard High School was one of the few that voted to keep them.

William Howard Taft High School is one of 151 CPS high schools and serves more than 4,000 students. CPS presides over more than 646 schools and 300,000 students.

News Digital’s Joshua Q. Nelson contributed to this report.

By Sam