Do School Safety Protocols Prep Students for Life or Prison?


Some education advocates wonder whether the aggressive safety protocols at many school buildings have the psychological effect of preparing students not for life, but for a life of confinement. reports that the Internet Protocol Digital Video System, a joint education-police program used in New York City schools, has been dubbed the “school-to-prison pipeline.” In addition to security cameras, the public school atmosphere in the city today includes more than 4,500 uniformed officers patrolling the halls and enforcement of zero-tolerance behavior policies.

Thousands of predominantly minority students attend “Impact” schools – a designation given to the most crime-ridden – who must walk through metal detectors and past armed police officers just to get to class. Students have expressed their objection in a variety of ways, including at a demonstration in Aug. 2006 on the steps of DOE’s central office at Tweed Courthouse. “We're students, not felons. We need books, not prisons,” hundreds of student demonstrators chanted.


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