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A drafted resolution could direct Portland superintendent to extend school resource officer decision

Board of Education will debate a new resolution to extend study into school resource officers, until July 1, 2021, before making a decision

PORTLAND, Maine — The role of school resource officers at Portland Public Schools remains on the chopping block, but a newly drafted resolution on Sunday could provide more guidance.

A petition started by two mothers, Victoria Parker and Erica King, to remove a law enforcement presence out of Portland's high schools has more than 1,000 signatures. It sparked the board to evaluate the effectiveness of police in the school system.

Another petition, following the discussion of the resolution, was brought forward by two sisters, Portland High School incoming juniors Gabby and Ashleigh Daniels, asking for the officers to stay in place.

The new resolution features recommendations from the Cutler Institute Report on school-based policing in Maine and calls on Superintendent Xavier Botana to act quickly throughout this comprehensive process and to sign a one-year extension for a decision by July 1, 2021, to either remove or modify the roles of SROs.

Two officers at Portland and Deering High Schools jobs are at risk. The Portland Board of Education plans on debating the new resolution Tuesday.

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