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Claremont Courier - A Local Nonprofit Newsroom

City forms working group on school resource officer

by Steven Felschundneff | steven@claremont-courier.com

On Tuesday the City of Claremont announced the names of the people who will be tasked with reimagining school safety for Claremont’s public schools.

Then Mayor Jennifer Stark compiled a working group including educators, district employees, parents and students to perform the leg work in developing a program to replace the current School Resource Officer which is jointly funded by the city and Claremont Unified School District.

Stark’s appointees are Medina Collie, Lynn King-Tolliver, Rafik Mohamed, Tyrone Newman, and Sophie Rivasplata.

In July the Claremont City Council approved a series of recommendations from the police commission and its school resource officer ad hoc committee, that would end the SRO program in June of 2022, provided certain limitations were met. One of those requirements would be ensuring that the police department would retain its current level of officer staffing.

“Trust is a cornerstone of the community policing model, as such we embrace the possibilities to revamp and re-imagine the school safety position with particular sensitivity to people of color and marginalized groups. The city sees this as an opportunity to better address the physical safety and psychological wellbeing of all stakeholders,” Stark said.

For its part, CUSD formed the District Advisory Committee on Racial Equity to “provide input and recommendations to district leadership and the board of education to inform decisions that impact historically marginalized students and stakeholders.”

On September 14, as part of the District Advisory Committee’s subcommittee on school climate, safety report, the group offered a series of recommendations to the school board, which will be part of a phased plan the district will consider over the next few years.

“The city council and school board share the funding of the school resource officer. The district looks forward to evaluating the information from all groups regarding the SRO, including any ideas for the SRO position from the city council’s working group,” board Vice President Steven Llanusa said.

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