Town Editor

Thumb_4421559c31dddfecae6e_img_0076_internet_ready
Jackie Lieberman
908-279-0303

TAP Into Another Town's News:

TAP Into Another Town's News:

Why I Opposed the Armed Officer (SRO), Again

May 21, 2014 at 1:42 PM

Last night at the Board of Education Meeting the plan was to hear a presentation about the effectiveness of the Student Resource Officer (Westfield policeman) for this past school year. One would have thought the actual officer himself would have appeared and spoke, but instead we heard a presentation from our Guidance Director and WHS Vice Principal.

I was very disappointed to not hear directly from the officer, though my views have not changed that what we really needed was a SAC (student assistance counselor) or mental health professional instead of an armed officer. Recently a criminologist at the University of Maryland wrote, "There is no evidence that placing officers in the schools improves safety. And it increases the number of minor behavior problems that are referred to the police—pushing kids into the criminal justice system."

Recently The Star Ledger reported on an incident at another NJ School where a coach at a sporting event grabbed the holster and gun from the school SRO and pointed it another coach in anger. Fortunately nobody was hurt, but these kinds of situations are alarming.

Sign Up for E-News

Just last week in another state a High School senior prank was met with an SRO approaching the students with his gun pointing directly at them--not knowing it was a prank. Add to the mix that a 2010 study of NYC Police officers showed that in situations where they are firing directly at a person, only 28.3 percent actually hit their target. Nobody wants to imagine what a stray bullet would do in a school of 2,000 kids and hundreds of staff. I am not staying that would ever happen with our excellent police force, but it's just not worth the risk in my opinion.

Neighboring towns are choosing other methods of security, like a wonderful new technology called the Share 911 program. It is a high tech emergency information system that provides access for employees, teachers, students, parents and most importantly first responders. It is being used all over NJ (nearby Springfield and Berkeley Heights, for example) in schools that have chosen to not have an armed SRO.

I also would like to know what the students' take has been on the SRO—I think a survey would be very helpful here. Please know I have nothing against our current SRO—he is an excellent officer and a dedicated young man.  Obviously as a parent I want all of our schools to be a safe environment. I just do not believe bringing a gun into the school is the smartest way to do it.

These are the views of Mitch Slater, Westfield resident, and do not reflect the views or opinions of the Board of Education.

The opinions expressed herein are the writer's alone, and do not reflect the opinions of TAPinto.net or anyone who works for TAPinto.net. TAPinto.net is not responsible for the accuracy of any of the information supplied by the writer.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

Sign Up for E-News

Westfield

Letters to the Editor

Thank You for Keeping the Public Informed

May 13, 2016

A quick note of thanks to you and your writers for helping keep our community involved and aware. I especially appreciate your coverage of various town meetings that we usually don't ...

Read the Full Story »





Police Blotter

Officers Assaulted, Bikes Stolen & More

May 25, 2016

May 18, 2016 3:49 p.m. Mr. Justin L. Cunningham, age 29, of Foyer Street, Edison, NJ, was arrested at Westfield Police Department headquarters on the strength of one outstanding warrant issued by ...

Read the Full Story »



Columns


In the Schools

Westfield Parent Workshop Weighs in on Body Image

“Raising Kids with a a Healthy Body Image” was the focus of Roosevelt Intermediate School’s Coffee with Counselors on May 18, the last in a series of parent workshops planned for ...

Read the Full Story »



Liz on Theatre

‘A Song at Twilight’ Shimmers on Shakespeare Theatre Stage

MADISON, NJ – There’s never been anyone quite like Noel Coward for wit and wisdom in equal measure, as so beautifully rendered in the opening production of The ShakespeareTheatre’s ...

Read the Full Story »



Lindabury Legal Corner

Relocating Out of State With Children After Divorce

For those divorced individuals who ultimately remarry, the median length of time to until their second marriage tends to be approximately four years. Second marriages can sometimes have the ...

Read the Full Story »


Lost in Suburbia®

The Itsy Bitsy Bedmate

One morning as I went to make the bed, I peeled down the covers to smooth out the sheets and saw something very disconcerting.  There, on my side of the bed, about halfway down, was a large dark ...

Read the Full Story »


Westfield Area Y

Finding the Right Day Camp for Your Child: Tips for Parents

The Westfield Area Y understands your top priority is your children. Choosing a summertime program is something that needs to be considered carefully as camp provides a wonderful opportunity for ...

Read the Full Story »


SERVPRO - Helpful Tips Regarding Fire & Water Clean Up & Restoration

Summer Home Maintenance Tips for Your New Home

With summer just around the corner, now’s the perfect time to start preparing your new home for the warmer months. From saving money on your electric bills to giving your home’s ...

Read the Full Story »


Rivero CPA

Some Guy Told Me ...

As a CPA, I've run across some very creative tax rumors and crazy assumptions. Some favorites: "If you create your New Jersey business and incorporate in Delaware or Nevada, you won't ...

Read the Full Story »


Keller Williams Realty: Real Life ... Real People

Keller Williams Continues to Paint the Town Red

What use to be “Keller Who” has grown to be the largest Real Estate Franchise in the United States. Keller Williams is continuing to grow with over 139,000 associates and 790 market ...

Read the Full Story »


Point View WealthPoints

How to Ride on the Roller Coaster of… Bonds?

The fixed income allocation of a diversified portfolio should be created to provide capital preservation to counter the volatility of stocks in the portfolio. Yet, despite most attention given ...

Read the Full Story »