Breitbart: Florida Republican Sen. Marco Rubio is urging the Trump administration’s Departments of Justice and Education to revise the Obama-era school discipline policy that discourages school districts from reporting threats to law enforcement in the name of social justice for minority students.
Rubio writes in the wake of the Parkland, Florida, shooting rampage by former Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School student Nikolas Cruz, who killed 17 people and had not been arrested prior to the shooting despite multiple signs of aggressive or threatening behavior.
“In the wake of the February 14, 2018 horrific shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, disturbing reports have indicated that federal guidance may have contributed to systemic failures to report Nikolas Cruz’s dangerous behaviors to local law enforcement,” the senator states.
In his letter to Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Education Secretary Betsy DeVos, Rubio refers to the Obama administration’s 2014 Dear Colleague Letter that mapped out requirements for public school disciplinary policies that would put an end to the “school-to-prison-pipeline” for minority students. The policy threatened schools with risk of losing federal funding if they showed higher numbers of referrals to law enforcement for minority students than for other students – even if the behaviors in question were unacceptable.
The guidance, writes Rubio, “discouraged schools from referring students to local law enforcement.”
“The 2014 guidance encouraged schools to emphasize ‘constructive interventions’ over certain disciplinary actions,” the senator says. “This guidance also states that school policies should ‘[e]nsure that school personnel understand that they, rather than school resource officers and other security or law enforcement personnel, are responsible for administering routine student discipline.’” MORE