DENVER (KDVR) — Parents reacted to the decision made by the board at Denver Public Schools to place armed officers on campuses.
Some parents are relieved there will be any kind of security presence at schools. Some who agree with the decision said their position is more nuanced than a simple yes to armed officers on campus.
“Quite frankly we need more counselors than cops,” Sarah Hines, a parent at East High School, said.
The support for school resource officers at campuses across Denver Public Schools is layered, at best.
“Maybe having them in plain clothes,” Jessica King, an East High parent, said, “developing a relationship with these kids, not someone seen as a brute force.”
Tran Ngyuen-Wills, another East High parent, is a hard no on armed officers at schools.
“After we took away the school resource officers, nothing changed then,” Ngyuen-Wills said.
Ngyuen-Wills was an East parent before officers were voted out and after, and like several other parents, she wants more mental health resources.
“There are kids and parents who are struggling right now and we’re not supporting them, the way we should be,” Ngyuen-Wills said.
“I think we need to listen to the kids,” Hines said.
“Numbness, this has happened all too often,” Grace Taub, a sophomore at East High, said. “School resource officers is a very complicated issue.”
The issue is complicated, Taub said, for students who don’t look like her.
“Students of color are unfairly targeted,” she said.
Like some parents, Taub said there is a place for security on campus.
“I think there should be a positive relationship that is not centered around consequences,” Taub said, “that is not centered around punishment, that is more centered around a feeling that these people are going to keep us safe.”