Following the increase in violence in the city’s schools, parents are expressing concerns about the safety of students in the classroom due to the lack of school safety officers in school buildings.
Images of a bloodstained sidewalk from a recent cut outside Truman High School cling to parents as concerns grow over acts of violence that have already taken place three weeks after the start of the school. ‘school year.
“This is a crisis. The continued violence that occurs in our schools and around our schools is out of control,” said Mona Davids, president of the NYC Parents Union.
Davids says she is concerned that incidents of school violence could increase if the number of school safety officers continues to decline.
She said: “We all agree on one thing, our children are in crisis, our children are not safe.”
George Floyd is the president of Teamsters Local 237, representing the thousands of school safety officers working in the city’s public school system.
He says of about 3,500 school security officers, 745 are still unvaccinated.
A vaccination mandate went into effect Monday, requiring all employees working in the city’s public schools to be vaccinated or take unpaid leave.
Floyd says tenure plays a small role in staffing issues. Instead, he blames the lack of support from the city and city council.
“School safety officers haven’t been hired since 2019, so before the vaccines mandate we were roughly 1,200 people,” Floyd said.
The Education Ministry informed school principals that they would have at least one school officer stationed in the building, while large schools would have an additional patrol.
In previous years, the DOE recruited approximately 500 school safety officers. Davids says this current class is only half that number, which he says is still not enough to keep students safe.
Advocates will gather at City Hall on Sunday to demand action to keep students safe.