The first time we had police in one of my schools it was primary school and the teacher said the officer was there to teach us about the work police did to help out the city. I didn’t fully understand why but it made me uncomfortable. I think then I summed it up to the fact he had a gun, thé thought of a gun at my school terrified me. Later on in high school I would see police officers in the hall more frequently. I was in highschool at the “height ” of Ferguson, Sandra Bland, when Black Lives Matter as an organization was just coming together and hands up don’t shoot. At 14 I had taken the time to read the literature and realized why (taking in the standpoint of me being a black woman) police freaked me out  so much. Whenever the police came to my school it was to spread copaganda. I remember on one occasion in my final year my teacher had asked us our thoughts on the police to which I responded saying I didn’t trust them and I wanted them abolished. She then went on to demean me while my classmates laughed. The next class she brought in an officer to “confront” me about my “misconceptions” about police as an institution. Another moment a cop came to spread more copaganda a friend and I commented about a video of state sanctioned violence we had seen on the news. The officer used this as an opportunity to gaslight us and rally our peers against us. Although I never saw officers use their power to inact acts of physical violence they definitely used it as a way to enact emotional and abstract violence against myself and other black and indignious students in the school whenever an opportunity arose. They made school an environment that was already uncomfortable due to having to occupy a space where you were not represented even more anxiety ridden. It is incredibly unfair to communities who historically have been and continue to be policed to have to deal with this institution in a school on top of other systemic injustices that are naturally engraved into the Canadian school system.

I was a student, Pembina Trails and Louis Riel