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SRO: WCCS may add school police officer

August 15, 2013

COLUMBIA CITY — The process has begun to place a school resource officer (SRO) at Whitley County Consolidated Schools.

At Tuesday’s Columbia City Board of Works meeting, Police Chief Tim Longenbaugh said he’s been working with WCCS’s Superentindent, Dr. Pat O’Connor, to come up with a plan for an SRO.

Many districts across the state are taking advantage of a matching grant from the state of Indiana that intends to help schools find ways to be safer. Applications for the grant opened Aug. 1 and goes on through November, and Longenbaugh said he is working with WCCS to come up with a plan to make the costs fair for all involved.

Because a Columbia City officer would spend most of his or her time working in the school system, WCCS would help cover the salary of the potential officer.

Longenbaugh said the officer would primarily spend time with high school-aged children at Columbia City High School and Eagle Tech Academy, but would also be responsible for Indian Springs Middle School and the elementary schools.

“We will continue discussions and figure out how to pursue this,” Longenbaugh said.

WCCS cannot apply for the grant until a “memo of understanding” is in place between the district and the city. Longenbaugh said the memo should be somewhat compiled by the next Board of Works meeting, Aug. 27.

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