The issue of whether or not to apply for grant funding for a School Resource Officer for USD 418 was revisited Monday night, with board of education members giving their go-ahead to Superintendent Mark Crawford to pursue the issue further.
Crawford had been directed by the board at it's previous meeting Sept. 28 to reach out to area schools and find out if they utilize such an officer. In his research, Crawford found Newton had not one, but three SRO's.
“The schools do supplement the pay for these officers,” Crawford said. “To the tune of, I believe, $25,000 per officer. But they've had this in place for 15 years.”
Crawford said that one of the Newton officers told him that very little of his day is spent on actual law enforcement.
“Even though they work like an independent contractor, paid for by the city and the police,” Crawford said, “they still don't feel like they are a law enforcement officer as much as they are building relationships and helping with staff, administration, teachers to really educate kids.”
The motion from the USD 418 board gave Crawford their OK for him to discuss the grant process further with the McPherson Police Department for a possible submission for grant funding.