Whalum reacts to Cash's plan - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Reported by Kontji Anthony

Whalum reacts to Cash's plan

Memphis City School Board Commissioner Kenneth Whalum, Junior has been one of the most vocal critics of school security.  After new superintendent Dr. Kriner Cash unveiled his 100-day plan at Monday night's school board meeting, Whalum had an unexpected response.
At Monday night's meeting, Cash revealed his 16-point safety plan for the first 100 days of his tenure.

"Like a good cook, like a good architect, you have to weave this together," he said.

Reacting Tuesday, Whalum said he likes the plan overall, but wonders what will happen after the first 100 days.

"Where is corporal punishment?" he asked.  "The parents said bring it back, the teachers are saying bring back discipline.  We still don't have that.  What we do have is a very good short-term plan, but the board has more work to do."
The plan increases metal detector testing to happen every morning, followed by random tests throughout the day.   
"We already have metal detectors, man, in every school," Whalum said. "Some of them haven't been used so long they're just broken."

Students would also get ID badges to track attendance and monitor where they should and should not be.  And, Cash has 27 more officers in training, to bring the total to 104.

Whalum said he likes the plan because it doesn't include Cash's idea to launch a Memphis City Schools Police force, separate from the city.  To Whalum, that prepares children for prison instead of the workforce.

"The federal prison system looks at 3rd and 4th graders, looks at their misbehavior, to determine how many beds we'll need for the future," Whalum said.

It is not legal in Tennessee to have a school police force, and it could be years before that idea becomes reality.

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