Council approves contract with WISD for resource officer

Posted Tuesday, Oct. 01, 2013  comments  Print Reprints

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With tragic shootings occurring in schools in recent years, schools across the country have increased their security to prevent any other attacks.

For years, the Weatherford ISD has taken part in the School Resource Officer program that involves officers from the city’s police department patrolling the area of the schools.

In 2009, the school went from having four of those officers to three because of budget restrictions.

On Sept. 24, the City Council approved the contract between the Weatherford Police Department and WISD that would add the fourth officer once again.

“They had always wanted to go back to the number they had,” Police Chief Mike Manning said.

The officers participating in the program from the WPD spend time at the school so the children become comfortable around them, provide information to parents and also drive by frequently to provide security.

“The SRO program is a program that not only benefits the District but also the community on a long-term basis,” said Derik Moore, director of public information, in a statement.

The city and WISD pay equal parts of the salaries and benefits for the officers, but because the request came so late in the city’s budget process, the department instead decided to pull an officer from patrol to fill the position.

Council member Jeff Robinson wanted to know if other cities also split the cost with their ISD for the officers.

Manning said some cities fund their own police departments while others may let the city pay it all.

The Aledo ISD is the nearest district with its own department since they do not have a city police department.

With four officers, one will be assigned to the high school, one the middle school and other two will divide their time between the elementary schools, Manning said.

The fourth officer began his work with WISD at the start of the new school year.

Manning said in the future, they may come back before the council to seek approval to refill that patrol position that was moved to the SRO program.

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