Scott Statement on the School Safety Commission Report

December 18, 2018
Press Release

As originally released by the Committee on Education and the Workforce, Democrats

WASHINGTON, DC – Ranking Member Bobby Scott (VA-03) issued the following statement after the release of the Trump administration’s school safety commission report.  

“The Federal School Safety Commission Report is not a serious or good-faith effort to make schools safer for students and educators. The report’s recommendations ignore both the research consensus and the demands of students and parents for tougher gun laws. Instead, the report promotes a longstanding, conservative agenda to undermine policies that protect students’ civil rights.

“The report makes no recommendations to address the common denominator in school tragedies – easy access to assault-style firearms designed for the battlefield. Rather than confronting the role of guns in gun violence, the Trump administration blames school shootings on civil rights enforcement – specifically the 2014 guidance that assists local school leaders in ending discrimination in discipline without jeopardizing school safety. This guidance has no connection to school shootings.

“The 2014 guidance was issued to help address the troubling and undeniable evidence – outlined in a recent GAO report – that Black students, boys, and students with disabilities receive harsher punishments than their classmates for similar or lesser offenses. The Commission’s report ignores this disparate impact and attempts to blame civil rights protections for school tragedies. This sends the message that schools are safest when they discriminate against students of color.

“With or without the discipline guidance, the administration is legally responsible for ensuring students are free from discrimination. Congress will hold the administration accountable for meeting its obligation to fully enforce federal civil rights law and for providing fast-based justifications for the report’s recommendations.”

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