Photo: Phillip LeConte (Flickr)
Monroe County Consolidated School Corporation approved the hire of a School Resource Officer at last night’s meeting. The MCCSC board unanimously voted to hire former Bloomington Police officer Jim Witmer. After the hire was approved, Witmer said he will not continue his bid for Monroe County sheriff.
Monroe County Consolidated School Corporation officials are expected to approve the hire of a school resource officer (SRO) at this evening’s board meeting.
School and Community Services director Beverly Smith says the hire is a proactive measure to keep MCCSC students safe.
“We do have school security officers, however an SRO, as we’re now calling it, will allow us to bring all of those efforts together under one particular office, and also allow us to do some larger district-wide planning,” Smith says.
The SRO position will assist in the development of the district’s safety plan and act as a law enforcement resource.
MCCSC Planning Director John Carter says although the hire is a step in right direction, the position may be stretched a little thin.
“It’s been likened to putting somebody on the rack, and pulled in all different directions,” Carter says. “So we have 21 buildings, 10 thousand students, and I’m sure the administrators will have lots of needs.”
Carter also says similar-sized school districts in the state have four or five officers. He hopes MCCSC will receive more funding in the future to hire extra officers.
Half the funds for the position come from MCCSC, the other half from a state grant program. The name of the hire will not be released until school board approval at tonight’s meeting.