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Recruits Meet One Last Time With Students They Mentor

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By Tom Weber, KWMU

St. Louis, MO – "Books and Badges" pairs recruits working to become St. Louis City Police Officers with city school students who are having trouble reading. The aim is to have future officers interact with the community and also help the children learn to read and write. Karen Kalish founded the program:

"We have a problem with literacy and reading in the public schools," Kalish says. "Kids don't often see police in the positive light and this helps them see the police recruits in a positive light, as a helping person. Not someone who incarcerated their family."

Wednesday was the last day recruits met with their students they'll graduate the police academy in two weeks. The department at this point hasn't scheduled its next classes for recruits but when that happens the mentoring program will be a required part of the police academy.

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