News

City Expands Programs to Reduce School Arrests – Williamsbridge 

(DNAINFO)  Amy Zimmer | February 28, 2017 — The city is expanding programs aimed at reducing school-based arrests. Advocates say it’s not enough.

Arrests and summonses in schools continue to dip, but Mayor Bill de Blasio said more must be done to keep black and Latino students from ending up in court.

To that end, the city is growing its “Warning Card Program” — in which NYPD officers and School Safety Agents can issue a “warning card” instead of a criminal summons to students 16 years of age or older for two low-level infractions on school grounds: possession of small amounts of marijuana and disorderly conduct.

It is also expanding its “School Justice Project,” which provides free legal assistance to students looking to clear summonses to reduce the number of students arrested and prevent a continuing cycle of involvement with the criminal justice system. The city is also offering more “Know Your Rights” trainings at schools with historically high rates of summonses and arrests.

“Our students belong in the classroom, learning with their peers,” de Blasio said in a statement. “Through our investments in school-based interventions, we are improving student behavior while keeping our teens out of trouble.”

Nearly four in 10 summonses issued have historically resulted in a warrant for failure to appear in court, which can impact the likelihood of future detention, according to city officials. By connecting students with legal help, the city hopes to avoid this.

The School Justice Project, which is run in partnership with the nonprofit legal group Youth Represent, launched in November at the Evander Childs Campus in Williamsbridge, The Bronx and will be available to students across the city this year.

Source: City Expands Programs to Reduce School Arrests – Williamsbridge – DNAinfo New York