Hamlet: Task force will examine disparities, biases in safety at Pittsburgh's public schools
The “Re-Imagine School Safety Task Force” will examine school safety policies and develop measures that seek to reduce the harm of punitive measures on students — particularly students of color — in the new year.
“Our district will not bring back our Black students to live and learn under the same racially biased environment that they left a year ago,” Superintendent Anthony Hamlet said during a press conference. “We will no longer set up Black students to fail; the school to prison pipeline and achievement gaps will end.”
The task force emerged from a resolution passed in September by the school board aimed at increasing the transparency and accountability of the district’s safety department.
School board member Devon Taliaferro, who introduced the resolution with Pam Harbin, said the measure was written to address the district’s long record of disproportionately suspending and arresting Black students and students with disabilities.