In Schools, a Question of Cops vs. Students

As a student at Flushing High School, Nilesh Viswashrao said police unfairly punished him, and other minority students, so often that he and many of his friends dreaded going to class — so much so that Viswashrao ended up dropping out of school days after his 17th birthday.

“When I was a student in high school, every day I was harassed by the school safety agents and NYPD officers,” said Viswashrao, now 18. “My friends and I were threatened, frisked and discriminated against, to the point where many of us never made it past high school.”

The New York Civil Liberties Union and the Dignity in Schools Campaign say Viswashrao’s story is all too common and charged that it highlights a systemic problem within the city —that minorities make up the overwhelming majority of individuals arrested or ticketed in the public schools.