On the Beat in Bluffton

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Northern Wells board OKs contract for resource officer

Northern Wells school board members Tuesday unanimously approved a contract paying $51,728.50 for a school resource officer.

The SRO will come from the Wells County Sheriff's Department and be responsible to the sheriff, but the contract does specify 21 duties and responsibilities for the position:

A. To be an extension of the school administration and principal’s office for assignments consistent with this Agreement.
B. To be a visible, active law enforcement figure on campus dealing with law enforcement matters and school code violations originating on school grounds.
C. To act as the designee of the campus administrator in maintaining the physical plant of the assigned campus to provide a safe environment as to law enforcement matters and school code violations. This includes building(s), grounds, parking lot(s), lockers and other public school property.
D. To provide a classroom resource for law education using materials approved by school officials.
E. To be a resource for students to enable them to be associated with a law enforcement figure and role model in the students’ environment.
F. To be a resource for teachers, parents, and students for conferences on an individual basis dealing with individual problems or questions, particularly in the area of substance control.
G. To make appearances before site councils, parent groups, and other groups associated with the campus and as a speaker on a variety of requested topics, particularly drug and alcohol abuse.
H. To document activities of the SRO on and off campus and compile monthly reports to be provided to the WCSD and to the principal of the assigned school.
I. The SRO will be involved in school discipline, when it pertains to preventing a disruption that would, if ignored, place students, faculty and staff at risk of harm, and then the SRO will resolve the problem to preserve the school climate.
J. In all cases of school discipline, the school administration will determine any consequences or punishment of negative student behavior.
K. The SRO will follow and conform to the NWCS policies and procedures that do not conflict with the established policies and procedures of the WCSD.
L. The SRO shall take law enforcement actions as necessary and advisable under the circumstances involved in any situation occurring at the schools served by the SRO, and, as soon as practical, if not prohibited by confidentiality provisions of state law, the SRO shall notify the principal of the school to which the SRO is assigned of any law enforcement activity undertaken or ongoing on the schools’ campuses.
M. At the principal’s request, the SRO shall take appropriate law enforcement action against intruders, trespassers, and unwanted unauthorized individuals who may appear at school related functions.
N. The SRO will share information with the administrator about persons and conditions that pertain to campus safety concerns.
O. The SRO will be familiar with helpful community agencies, such as mental health clinics, drug treatment centers, etc., that offer assistance to dependency and delinquencyprone youths and their families. Referrals will be made when necessary.
P. The SRO, if requested by the principal, assistant principal, or the guidance counselor of their respective school, shall attend parent/faculty meetings and student staffing, in order to solicit support and understanding of the SRO Program from the faculty and parents and to promote awareness of the law enforcement function.
Q. The SRO and the principal will develop plans and strategies to prevent and/or minimize dangerous situations which might result in student unrest.
R. The SRO will coordinate all of his/her activities with the principal and staff members concerned and will seek permission, guidance, and advice prior to enacting any programs within the school.
S. The SRO may be asked to provide community wide crime prevention presentations that include, but are not limited to:
Drugs and the law - Adult and juvenile;
Alcohol and the law - Adult and juvenile;
Sexual assault prevention;
Safety programs - Adult and juvenile;
Assistance in other crime prevention programs as assigned.
T. The SROs will wear approved department uniform, formal business attire or business casual with appropriate logos and name badges depending on the time of school year, the type of school activity or program, and the requests of the school and/or the WCSD. The Wells County Sheriff and the principal shall jointly set expectations and resolve any disputes in this area.
U. The SROs will wear their department authorized duty weapons in accordance with WCSD department policy.

Learn more in the Wednesday, April 16, News-Banner.

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