MDPD fighting more than crime

FL law enforcement leaders say it starts in the classroom

Ashley Montgomery | 4/3/2014, 9 a.m.
Police, law enforcement leaders and school officials are banding together to fight crime on a whole new level as they ...
Law enforcement leaders (L-R) J.D. Patterson, Morris Copeland, Ian Moffett, Miami Dade County JSD employee and Leanard Burgess gather for a great cause. Photo by Ashley Montgomery


As history and statistics support, crime is connected to whether young men are employable at decent wages.  A report was released from Fight Crime: Invest in Kids that highlighted research that shows long-term changes in wages and employment opportunities among non-college educated men may explain as much as half of property and violent crime rates. Florida students show a stable sign of struggle to become proficient in reading and math.

“In Florida, more than 75 percent of jobs require further education after high school, and this trend is projected to continue through 2018,” Patterson said. 

Many municipalities require higher education, and virtually every job requires people to be strong readers and communicators who can master complex subject matter. 

“Our schools are making great progresses in keeping this effort [Florida Standards] on track and derailing it would be a terrible mistake for our students and the safety of our streets as well,” Burgess said.

Copeland concluded that his mission is to keep children in the forefront. 

“Kids don’t end up in the criminal justice system overnight,” Copeland said. “For many life has been a long footrace with early stumbles that made them fall so far behind they simply couldn’t catch up. These Standards will ensure they’re truly ready to go from one grade to the next, and they they cross the finish line with a diploma that prepares them for success.” 

Fight Crime: Invest in Kids is a nonpartisan anti-crime organization of nearly 5,000 law enforcement leaders and crime survivors — including 70 in Florida.

Its sheriffs, police chiefs, prosecutors and crime victims promote greater public investments in programs to direct kids to a better path in life. 

The Florida Standards, implemented by Gov. Rick Scott and the Florida Department of Education are committed to ensuring students have the highest academic standards so they are prepared to succeed in college, career and beyond. The Standards are state-level expectations of what students should know at each grade level.