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Northeast students

Lincoln Police Officer Nate Hill, resource officer for Northeast High School, checks on a group of students hanging out in the 6300 block of Huntington Avenue on Tuesday. Hill says most kids who gather are good ones who do what he asks and don’t cause problems, though there are exceptions.

ERIC GREGORY, Journal Star

The Journal Star article (“Concerned citizens want more detailed agreement,” May 9) accurately focused on those of us who are concerned about having armed police in our schools.

It is heartening to see that grassroots citizens are finally being heard. The school board and the City Council should not put into place a knee-jerk plan – costing a substantial amount of money – without adequate consideration of the consequences of the action.

There is substantial evidence that police in schools result in more African-American and other minority children being involved in the juvenile justice system. (By the way, this fact is the No. 1 predictor of later juvenile delinquency. This is a latent bad consequence of a well-intended policy.)

Granted, parents are concerned for their children’s safety. However, if one looks at the data, the chances for a school shooting – especially in Lincoln – are less than a lighting strike or being hit by a car.

Unfortunately, perception trumps rationality. The fact is that we would be better to strengthen community learning centers with the money to be spent on school resource officers.

Given the disagreement on the issue, maybe to do nothing would be better than to spend money unwisely. Think about it -- and that might also apply to the $300,000 for buzzer systems for school doors.

John Krejci, Lincoln

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