Texas high schoolers required to watch video on how to interact with cops

Instruction includes a 16-minute video showing possible scenarios on being pulled over

By Gina Salamone
New York Daily News

DALLAS — Along with math, science and history, how to interact with cops is now also required coursework for Texas high school kids.

Students in grades 9 through 12 must receive instruction on dealing with law enforcement that includes a 16-minute video showing possible scenarios on being pulled over.

New this year, it’s part of the Community Safety Education Act, signed into law by state officials to help ease tensions between police and students following shootings of citizens.

“The goal of the act was to define the behavior expectations of citizens and law enforcement during traffic interactions,” state senator Royce West says at the start of the video.”We know that in some communities, there’s an issue regarding trust between law enforcement and the community.

“We’re addressing that issue through training in the academies; our law enforcement academies, our schools, and our driver’s education programs,” he adds. “More specifically, schools are having to design a course to define what the behavior expectations are of citizens.”

The video then features two actresses in the front seat of a car, and the passenger is telling the driver she’s late and that they should go faster and speed through the light before it turns red. The pair is then shown getting pulled over by a cop.

They’re seen fumbling around for phones and paperwork, while the officer instructs them to put their hands on the dashboard or steering wheel.

A narrator then explains that the video shows you what not to do when stopped by a police officer, and introduces clips of high school students and other citizens asking typical questions about the right way to handle yourself if you get pulled over.

Students ask questions like, “What does an officer expect to see when he approaches our car?,” followed by answers from cops.

“Officers don’t always have a clear view into your vehicle,” a cop explains. “Keep your hands visible. Don’t move around, don’t reach for anything...If it’s dark, turn the overhead light on.”


McClatchy-Tribune News Service

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