L.A. School Board Declines Left’s Demand to ‘Defund the Police’ — For Now

Defund the Police L.A. schools (Mario Tama / Getty)
Mario Tama / Getty

The Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) board failed to agree on a proposal to defund the L.A. School Police on Tuesday evening, defeating an effort by the Black Lives Matter movement and United Teachers L.A. (UTLA).

The Los Angeles Times reported that the six-member board failed to reach a majority behind any proposal:

The lack of consensus capped a day of intense passions as students and activist groups called for terminating the department and using its $70 million annual budget for other student needs, especially those that would benefit Black students.

The school police had a smaller number of equally passionate defenders, including officers, social workers, school administrators and even a few students.

As Breitbart News has reported, the Los Angeles School Police Department (LASPD) has roughly 500 employees and protects public schools from mass shootings and gang violence. Because of the school police, LAUSD schools are often safer than the surrounding neighborhoods in high-crime areas of the city.

However, left-wing activists demanded that the police be defunded, claiming that they were symbols of “white supremacy.” Last week, they marched to the offices of the school board to make those demands heard.

The UTLA website, which provides Black Lives Matter propaganda for use in classroom instruction, argues for dismantling the school police force and using the budget to hire mental health professionals and counselors instead.

A UTLA press release June 21 read, in part:

Why have we over the last decades increased police presence in schools in communities of color, especially significantly-Black schools, while we have allowed academic and social-emotional supports to be cut? The answer is institutional racism and implicit acceptance of a culture that criminalizes Black students.

Activists, who had the support of UC Berkeley graduate Mónica García and Harvard-educated charter school advocate Nick Melvoin, favored phasing out funding for the police over four years.

However, other, less radical proposals, were also debated. None of them gathered enough support for a four-vote majority.

The Times noted: “Public speakers overwhelmingly voiced support for Garcia’s resolution, but many parents, school employees and police officers defended the department, referring to officers’ experiences risking their lives to keep students safe and building community relationships.”

The activists vowed to continue their protests. A task force led by Superintendent Austin Beutner will study the issue.

Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News and the host of Breitbart News Sunday on Sirius XM Patriot on Sunday evenings from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET (4 p.m. to 7 p.m. PT). His new book, RED NOVEMBER, is available for pre-order. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.

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