Three additional school resource officers will be in the halls when Anne Arundel County Public Schools resume in the fall.
Currently, the Anne Arundel County Police Department has 21 school resource officers: 13 are assigned to the 12 public high schools, two are assigned to the Phoenix Academy, and six are assigned to the 19 middle schools. The new officers will be assigned to the middle schools.
This new plan, discussed when the county executive added 30 new police officer positions as part of her Fiscal Year 2015 budget, will go into effect in August of 2014.
“Sadly, since the tragic Sandy Hook Elementary shooting 18 months ago, there have been numerous similar, violent incidents at schools across the country, including a shooting this month at a high school in Oregon,” said County Executive Laura Neuman. “This should not be accepted as the new normal. I remain committed to making our schools a true sanctuary for our children to grow and learn, and adding these additional officers is part of my long-term vision for school safety.”
One of the best features of the nationally recognized Anne Arundel County Police SRO program is the consistent, crime prevention presence of fully uniformed police officers in schools each day. These officers respond to calls for service, proactively patrol school grounds, investigate crimes, and maintain partnerships with parents, faculty and community members. Officers get to know the students, their families, the circumstances of their lives and the challenges they face.
“School Resource Officers play a pivotal role in the safety of schools, but most importantly, in the success of our students,” said Anne Arundel County Police Chief Kevin Davis. “These officers are mentors, role models and trusted adults who build relationships of respect and trust with students. Their impact is immeasurable as they often pre-empt potential problems before they arise.”
The School Resource Unit facilitates combined training related to all-hazard planning, emergency preparation and violence prevention. They also provide training to Anne Arundel County Public Schools personnel on matters of mutual concern.