Bill Would Reduce Harmful Police Referrals in K-12 Schools

Photo by Sin on Unsplash

By Vanguard Staff

Sacramento, CA – This week, AB 2441 was passed out of the Assembly Education Committee.  The bill would decrease law enforcement involvement in student behavioral issues at school and provide educators the flexibility they need to respond appropriately to student behavior.

“In partnership with our dedicated sponsor coalition, AB 2441 has overcome a significant legislative hurdle. With all the known negative impacts of using law enforcement to discipline students, we aim to empower teachers and administrators to make decisions that prioritize the success and safety of their students in the classroom,” said Assemblymember Kalra.

He added, “AB 2441 will bring California closer to utilizing evidence-based approaches to address student misbehavior and combatting the school-to-prison pipeline.”

Current law mandates educators to involve law enforcement in various student behavior incidents, leading to unnecessary calls and negative outcomes for students.

However, Kalra’s office pointed out, “Studies show student interactions with law enforcement can harm academic success and increase involvement in the criminal legal system. Further, studies have demonstrated school police presence does not decrease student crime rates and may lead to more student misconduct.”

“In the pursuit of educational equity, passing AB 2441 is not just a step forward—it’s a declaration that young minds deserve schools fostering their mental, social, and emotional well-being. Teachers must have the freedom to forge transformative bonds with students without fear of penalization or criminalization,” said Jessica Black, National Movement Building Director at Black Organizing Project. “Education is about nurturing futures, not feeding pipelines; it’s time to design schools where youth thrive.”

“AB 2441 is crucial to keeping students in school and empowering educators with the flexibility to respond to situations in ways that are based on an individual student’s needs and circumstances. Black students and students with disabilities are disproportionately impacted by referrals to law enforcement. For example, officers handcuffed students with disabilities 41% of the time, compared to 15% of students without disabilities. When students were referred to law enforcement, officers handcuffed Black students 20% of the time, compared to only 9% of White students. We thank the Assembly Education Committee for passing AB 2441,” said Oscar Daniel Lopez, Senior Staff Attorney with Disability Rights California.

Assemblymember Bryan (D-Los Angeles) is a principal co-author of AB 2441. The bill is also coauthored by Assemblymember Bonta (D-Oakland) and Senators Bradford (D-Gardena) and Skinner (D-Berkeley).

Co-sponsors of AB 2441 include Alliance for Boys and Men of Color, American Civil Liberties Union-California, Black Organizing Project, Black Parallel School Board, Coleman Advocates for Children and Youth, Disability Rights California, Dolores Huerta Foundation, Public Counsel, and Social Justice Learning Institute.

About The Author

Disclaimer: the views expressed by guest writers are strictly those of the author and may not reflect the views of the Vanguard, its editor, or its editorial board.

Related posts

Leave a Reply

X Close

Newsletter Sign-Up

X Close

Monthly Subscriber Sign-Up

Enter the maximum amount you want to pay each month
Sign up for