Beginning with the 2018-19 school year, JeffersonCounty Sheriff Jeff Shrader is allocating four additional deputies to serve asschool resource officers (SRO) for Jefferson County Public Schools inunincorporated areas of the county. Traditionally, ten deputies have served asSROs during the school year, but when school resumes next month that numberwill increase to fourteen when four new SROs are assigned to middle schools.
Sheriff Shrader explains that “schoolresource officers enhance security in our schools. The deputies’ presence andthe trust they build with students helps deter juvenile criminal activities,both in school and out. Adding four SROs will better serve our students, theirparents, and our community as a whole.”
Jeffco Public Schools Superintendent Dr.Jason Glass agrees: “We are incredibly lucky to have strong partnerships withour local law enforcement agencies. It’s invaluable for students to buildrelationships with our SROs. The addition of four SROs is phenomenal and weappreciate the increased safety of our students and staff.”
During calendar years 2016 and 2017, theSheriff’s Office received more than 900 Safe 2 Tell reports and investigatedover 200 school-related threats. With these figures on the rise, and a pressingneed to increase operational capacity at the jail, the Board of CountyCommissioners is currently considering adding 28 positions for sworn personnel.Six of these would be assigned to patrol, with four as school resourceofficers.
“By dedicating four additional deputiesto our schools, particularly our middle schools, we reinforce our commitment topublic safety,” explains County Commissioner Tina Francone. “I applaud SheriffShrader and my colleagues on the board for taking the steps necessary to ensureour children continue to have the opportunity to learn in a safe environment.”
Commissioner Casey Tighe also supportsthe Sheriff’s decision: “Understandably, one of our community’s greatestconcerns is the safety of our schools. The presence of school resource officershelps reassure parents that Jefferson County cares about their children’seducation and well-being. I am proud of the partnership between the Sheriff’sOffice and the school district to provide safe and secure facilities for ourstudents.”