Policing in Schools
Lecturer: Dr Remi Joseph-Salisbury, University of Manchester
March 15, 2021
In recent years there have been repeated high-profile calls to increase the number of school-based police officers. Whilst police are becoming an increasingly normalised presence in British schools, there is a need for closer scrutiny of the potential problematics of this development. Wider evidence of institutional racism in both policing and schooling, suggests that the presence of police in schools may raise issues in terms of race and racism. There are also issues with regard to social class and other structural factors, including disability and sexuality. In this session, we explore the issue of police in schools with a particular focus on racism. We will explore recent evidence on police in schools, in order to better understand this contemporary issue.
- Connelly, L., Legane, R., and Joseph-Salisbury, R. 2020. Connelly, L., Legane, R., and Joseph Salisbury, R. 2020. Decriminalise the Classroom: A community response to police in Greater Manchester schools, No Police in Schools.
- Nijjar, J. 2020. Police–school partnerships and the war on black youth, Critical Social Policy .
- Joseph-Salisbury, R. 2020. Race and Racism in English Secondary Schools, Runnymede Trust.
- ACLU (American Civil Liberties Union) (2017) Bullies in Blue: The Origins and Consequences of School Policing. New York: ACLU.
- Henshall, A. 2018.Are police officers in schools a force for good? Schools Week, 26th May 2018.
- Chechi-Ribeiro, V. 2020. Why the Police Have No Place in Schools, The Guardian, 5th September, 2020.
Questions for Discussion
- How can wider evidence on institutional racism inform our explorations of police in schools?
- What are some of the key issues with the increased presence of police in schools?
- What alternatives can we think of to police in schools? Using our imaginations, and our own experiences, what kind of learning environments can we envision to improve the educational experiences of young people?