Peoria Public Schools discussing armed guards, changing school names at special meeting Monday

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PEORIA, Ill. (WMBD) — The Peoria Public Schools District 150 is holding a special board meeting Monday night to discuss two major issues.

District leaders will discuss whether to replace Peoria police officers in schools with district-hired armed guards. Currently, the district pays $200,000 a year to have an armed Peoria Police officer at the three district high schools for protection.

But, with approval at Monday’s meeting, the district will have the option of replacing Peoria Police Officers, a plan which district leaders say would save the district money. This plan will put one armed-security guard at each high school campus.

In this plan, security guards would only use their guns as a last resort and under what the district defines as extreme necessity.

The plan would need to be revised and reviewed before being officially implemented by the district.

District 150 board members will also discuss the renaming of six district schools, whom board member Gregory Wilson says namesakes’ have ties to racism and slavery.

The schools that could be getting new names are Thomas Jefferson Primary School, Harrison Community Learning Center, Charles Lindbergh Middle School, Roosevelt Magnet School, Washington Gifted School and Calvin Coolidge Middle School.

If enacted, the motion would be then referred to the district’s buildings committee who would discuss names of historically relevant Peorians as a replacement.

The meeting starts at 6:30 p.m. Monday at the district administration building.

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