A new safety report for Alexandria City Public Schools reveals a concerning increase in violent incidents.
The report formally presented to the school board at a public meeting shows 26 ACPS students were arrested in the final two quarters of the 2021-2022 school year – up from 20 arrests in the two previous quarters.
There were 28 fights and assaults, 19 incidents involving controlled substances, and 15 recovered weapons, including seven knives and three stun guns.
There were 14 reports of missing students, 12 incidents involving prohibited items, 11 reports of sexual assault or sexual misconduct, and 11 incidents involving various types of threats.
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“What we see from the data is that, you know, it’s pretty significant,” parent Rene Islas of The Community Group said. “There were 194 incidences in the second half of last year.”
The parents coalition is among those that advocated for the release of safety data after school resource officers were defunded from the school system in 2021. SROs returned a few months later after several incidents of violence.
“We asked for an early warning and intervention system to be put in place – one that identifies students that might need some support based on their grades, based on their absences, those types of things,” Islas said.
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The report shows the arrests were divided between middle schools and Alexandria City High School, the city’s only high school.
Black and Hispanic students were the majority of those arrested. They make up roughly 60% of the school district’s population.