ST. PAUL, Minn. – School police officers can use force to restore discipline as long as it’s “reasonable,” said state Attorney General Keith Ellison. He issued the legal opinion after school resource officers expressed concern about a new school law that restricted physical holds. Where to draw the line on what’s reasonable? It depends on whether bodily harm or death is the risk, Ellison said.

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Ellison: “Safety is essential for learning, and everyone in our schools — students, teachers, staff, administrators, SROs (school resource officers), and families- –wants to be safe and feel safe. The aims of the new amendments to our school discipline laws are worthy.  I thank everyone who brought this issue to the attention of my office and is contributing to the conversation and our shared goal of safety. Our working together is essential to ensuring that everyone in our schools can live with dignity, safety and respect.”