Chicago police, CPS contract: Board of Education votes to keep contract with CPD amid protests

Chicago protests: Activists rally outside CPS HQ during vote

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Thursday, August 27, 2020
Chicago police, CPS contract: Board of Education votes to keep contract with CPD amid protests
Members of the Chicago Board of Education voted Wednesday to keep their contract with Chicago police.

CHICAGO (WLS) -- The Chicago Board of Education voted to keep its contract with Chicago police Wednesday, as protests continued outside CPS headquarters.

The board voted to 4-2 to keep the contract.

Student-led groups have spent the summer marching, protesting, rallying and even getting arrested over the issue of Chicago police officers in schools. On Wednesday, they took over the block in front of Chicago Public School headquarters, hoping to convince board members to cut the CPD contract with schools.

RELATED: Lincoln Park High School council votes to remove SROs after student protest

A North Side high school council has voted to remove its school resource officers.

Some members said they have been listening.

"It's the board's duty to listen to the research, and the research is conclusive that police perpetuate trauma and harm and contribute to the criminalization of Black students," board member Ann Rome said.

While CPS said student arrests have decreased by 80% during the past eight years, the disparity among students of color remains the same.

RELATED: CPS says police officers removed from 17 high schools, announces School Resource Officer program reforms

"What is your threshold for police? When is enough, enough? Dragged down the stairs, tased ... that was not enough," board member Elizabeth Todd-Breland said.

Since the push to cut the CPS/CPD contract, CPS said 55 local school councils have voted to keep school resource officers, while 17 have opted to remove them. CPS said it has made several reforms to the program, including more training.

"All Chicago police in their roles in schools will now be required to have exceptional disciplinary records to serve in a CPS school," CPS CEO Janice Jackson said.