There will be an increased police presence in Lebanon schools this fall as the corporation implements its new School Resource Officer program.
The Lebanon Community School Corp. board of trustees voted Tuesday to create this new program, initially hiring two officers to serve in the schools. This replaces the current arrangement, where Lebanon Police Department officer Steve Smith has an office at Lebanon Middle School. Instead this fall, LCSC will itself employ two certified police officers.
“After a series of discussions and investigations and reviews, we are moving the school resource officer program from a support system by LPD to one we would manage and run ourselves,” said LCSC Superintendent Dr. Robert Taylor to the school board. “The program will be comprised of individuals we employ as LCSC employees with specific responsibilities of school security and student safety, but also a variety of support activities.”
The program will begin with two officers, housed at Lebanon Middle and Lebanon High schools at first, but Taylor hopes to eventually expand the program to six officers. Officers will be armed and have full law enforcement capabilities, including being certified, having full training, meeting the same criteria as LPD or Boone County Sheriff’s officers. The school resource officers must also have an additional SRO certification that includes specialized training and basic medical knowledge.
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