Amid anti-police protests, Lynchburg Chapter of Virginia Organizing calls for removal of school safety officers

Local News

Courtesy: Elvert Barnes / CC BY-SA 2.0

LYNCHBURG, Va. (WFXR) — The Lynchburg Chapter of Virginia Organizing is calling for the removal of all school safety officer positions amid the current climate of anti-police protests.

In a Facebook post on Wednesday, the organization recommended that the position of school resource officer (SRO) be eliminated and the funds be used to replace them with mental health counselors and other support staff.

“A school resource officer is a certified police officer, employed by the local police department and stationed in the public schools through an agreement (contract) known as a Memorandum of Understanding between the school board and the local police. SROs are employees of and supervised by the local police department.

In other communities, following best practices, the schools’ safety and wellness plans lean heavily into programs supporting mental health, intentional community-building, and a positive school climate. Charlottesville Schools recently eliminated the position of school resource officers.”

Virginia Organizing, Lynchburg Chapter

The chapter asks the public to email school board members or to attend the meeting in person on Tuesday, July 7, at 5 p.m.

If you want to provide public comment at the school board meeting, you can:

  • Send a written statement to the school board clerk at meservyca@lcsedu.net​​​​​​​. Statements will be read during the public comment section of the school board meeting. ​​​​​​​
  • Leave a voice message on the school board clerk’s phone line at (434) 515-5077. Messages will be played during the public comment section of the school board meeting.

Written statements and/or voice messages should include the name of the person submitting the comment, the subject of his/her remarks, and be limited to three minutes per individual and five minutes per group. All written statements and/or voice messages must be received no later than 15 minutes prior to the start of the meeting.

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