A head cold and icy roads prevent me from attending a meeting of the Senate Education Committee this morning. Except for those circumstances, I would be there to speak against passage. I would speak against removing what little oversight there is, over the APS Police force leadership.
The purpose of Senate Bill 306, link, is to enable the Albuquerque Public Schools Board of Education to create a publicly funded private police force, completely independent of external oversight. It will allow the leadership of the APS to create a Praetorian Guard in every sense. It will report directly to, and only to, the superintendent and the school board. There will not be even the oversight of the Bernalillo County Sheriff and his feckless MOU, link.
SB 306 contains a lot of disturbing language;
(4) requiring that disciplinary interactions between students and school police be based on the individual student and the particular circumstances of the student's acts or omissions.Historically, it means special treatment of certain students to the overall detriment of discipline school and district wide, and the distortion of the statistical record of student misconduct.
(5) may enforce all applicable laws ...May arrest means may not arrest. It means an APS police officer is given the discretion to let things slide, in particular if there are senior administrative or executive interests at stake. Talk about calling a spade a spade, wikilink.
(7) may make arrests for violations of law, ...
If the Bill passes, students will not be subject to arrest by officers who are working undercover. Why not? What business is that of the Legislature in the first place?
C. The superintendent of a school district, pursuant to authority granted by the local school board, may employ and assign duties to police officers for the school district.
|APS Police Chief Tellez arresting peaceful protestors at public meeting.|
Before the Senate Education Committee approves SB306, it is reasonable for them to insist that APS produce the public records regarding their abuse of the lack of oversight they already enjoy.
It's a public records request. There is only one reason to hide the record. It's a bad one; to avoid the consequences of stakeholders knowing the truth,
Email Senator Steven Neville, link, demand that APS produce the findings of at least three investigations into felony criminal misconduct in the leadership of the APS, before they he eliminates what little oversight than they already have.
photo Mark Bralley