Schools, not resource officers, will handle student discipline in Fairfax Co.

WASHINGTON — The school resource officers at Fairfax County, Virginia, public schools will not play a role in determining student discipline beginning this year.

They also won’t be assisting federal Immigration and Customs Enforcement in routine cases.

A revised memorandum of understanding between the school district and the county’s police department, approved Tuesday by the county’s board of supervisors, does the following:

  • establishes a clear division between the role of officers in criminal matters and school administrative staff on student discipline matters;
  • clarifies that officers are not involved in determining student discipline;
  • establishes that officers shall not be involved with the enforcement of school rules or disciplinary infractions that are not violations of law;
  • removes “stop and frisk” from the memorandum; and
  • adds officer training focused on “implicit bias, disability awareness, crisis intervention training, restorative justice techniques and cultural competency,” according to the district.

In addition, language was added stating: “[Police] officers are not agents of the Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency and, as such, they shall not participate in any requests for assistance that is not of a criminal nature within the [schools].”

Schools Superintendent Scott Brabrand and police Chief Edwin Roessler had produced the revised draft agreement, which was reviewed during three community meetings in July.

“We believe the revised [memorandum] will further strengthen the trust and relationship between our school administrators, [school resource officers] and our community,” said Karen Corbett Sanders, the school board chair, in a prepared statement.

The 51 officers serve in middle schools, high schools and secondary schools throughout the district, according to the school system.

Jack Moore

Jack Moore joined as a digital writer/editor in July 2016. Previous to his current role, he covered federal government management and technology as the news editor at, part of Government Executive Media Group.

Dick Uliano

Whether anchoring the news inside the Glass-Enclosed Nerve Center or reporting from the scene in Maryland, Virginia or the District, Dick Uliano is always looking for the stories that really impact people's lives.

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