July 10, 2019

End to random searches of students is a victory for entire school community

OPINION: Mauro Bautista, principal of Felicitas and Gonzalo Mendez High School in Los Angeles.

For the past three years, students and adult allies have built a campaign to end the dehumanizing and demoralizing 26-year practice of randomly pulling secondary students, some as young as 11, out of class — without cause — to search their bodies and their belongings for weapons with metal detector wands.

But last month, inspired by a coalition of youth leaders, educators, community advocates and researchers, the Los Angeles Unified School Board passed a resolution to finally end this practice, jump-starting the path toward truly restorative schools. This is a powerful and long-overdue win.

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