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Brockton to unveil new safety proposal to quell school violence after National Guard request denied – Boston 25 News | #schoolsaftey


BROCKTON, Mass. — Brockton Mayor Robert Sullivan and Acting Superintendent of Schools James Cobbs are expected to propose their ideas to address the ongoing safety concerns at Brockton High School on Tuesday night.

A recent push from four school committee members had been to bring in the National Guard to help with issues like fights, disruptions, students leaving school without permission, trespassers at the school, and teachers calling out.

On Monday, community members gathered outside as students returned from February break to show both the students and staff that they were supported.

Those school committee members wanted the National Guard to serve in roles like substitute teachers or hall monitors but they’ve seen pushback from people who say it sends the wrong message to the high schoolers, including Gov. Maura Healey, who ruled against deploying guardsmen.

“I don’t think the National Guard is appropriate. I do understand, though, the concerns raised by the school committee and others in the community. I’ll tell you what we have done. My administration has given a grant to Brockton to use to audit its current safety condition,” Healey said. “We want to make sure, and as governor, I want to make sure that every student and educator in the state, including in Brockton, is safe and is able to go to school and learn in a safe environment.”

They hope that more community engagement and parental involvement can help solve the issues at the school.

However, one mother and Brockton High School alum said she believes this is a problem with how the administration handles situations, like locking bathrooms as a disciplinary action, rather than something the National Guard can come in and fix.

“When you drop the ball as far as professionals in your job then you can just use the kids as an excuse. Oh, look what we’re dealing with. Kids are out of control. But to me it’s an excuse,” said Victoria Giesta.

The state is funding a safety audit for Brockton Public Schools.

“Our job is to make sure they receive assistance that way and support. That’s why we’ve given them the money to be able to do that public safety audit and make sure the right resources are in place,” Healey said. “My secretary of education will continue to work directly with Brockton on this as well, um, and we just need to go forward and hopefully get all the right pieces in place down there to ensure students feel safe and are able to learn in a safe environment.”

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