Graduation Year


Document Type

Open Access Senior Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts


Politics and International Relations

Reader 1

Nancy Neiman

Reader 2

Thomas Kim

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© 2022 Maya K Lynch


This paper explores the rise and impact of police officers in schools, frequently referred to as School Resource Officers or SROs. In addition to attempting to delegitimize the common explanation that school shootings necessitate SROs and their ongoing presence, the paper goes on to outline two under-researched drivers of SROs. These are the immense underfunding of public K-12 schools which forces a search for additional sources of revenue alongside an ongoing effort to suppress student movements and control students of color. The paper then analyzes three case studies of school districts which, to varying degrees, removed SROs and evaluates their success against abolitionist reform metrics with the aim of drawing out the most important lessons. The evidence from this paper and its research suggests that student wellbeing necessitates nothing short of the total removal of SROs and policing from schools and the author hopes that this paper can play a small role in the accomplishment of this goal.