The police were called to a New Jersey elementary school after a 9-year-old boy made a disparaging comment about the brownies he was eating at an end-of-the-year class party.
According to the Philadelphia Inquirer,another student interpreted the remarks as racist and instead of just punishing the offender with detention, or calling his parents, or just explaining what he did wrong (if anything at all), the school turned to law enforcement. The cops didn’t press charges but still reported the incident to the New Jersey Division of Child Protection.
This is not an isolated incident in the school district. The police were called about five times a day in the past month for a district of 1,875 students.
Apparently the directive to call the police over even minor incidents comes from the top down. In a meeting in May, the Camden County Prosecutor’s Office directed school officials and police to involve law enforcement in issues “as minor as a simple name-calling incident that the school would typically handle internally.” They were also told to report “just about every incident” to the New Jersey Division of Child Protection.
Parents in the district are understandably pissed and have been lobbying the mayor to end this ridiculously wasteful over-policing. Other parents want to change schools, having lost faith in the school’s administrators.