Weatherford Democrat

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October 9, 2013

SROs

Being a school resource officer about more than policing schools and campuses

(Continued)

“This SRO program is very attractive to veteran officers that want to give back,” he said. “I was an SRO until about two years ago and it’s one of the most rewarding and best jobs I’ve ever had.

“It’s one of those few places where you can guide and mentor and actually see the difference.”

Raymond, who had previously served as a sergeant with WPD, originally applied to be an SRO for the hours. That was 10 years ago. Now, he says one of the best things about the job is the relationships built between students and officers.

“There are some kids that were in elementary when I was doing ‘Stranger Danger’ talks and they come up and tell me, ‘I remember you,’” he said. “When you’re working with the kids, you’re able to experience that.”

In terms of discipline and safety, if a situation arises at any of the WISD campuses, SROs are known as the last resort. Initially, the district will do an investigation of the incident, alongside the SRO and the parents, and try to come up with the best decision.

“The principals and the teachers and the parents know the kids better than we do,” Raymond said. “Even if it’s a criminal offense, we don’t always file charges unless there is a victim who wants to press charges, of course.

“If the school can handle it through administrative discipline and everyone’s OK with that, that’s what we want to have happen.”

To learn more about WISD’s school resource officers, visit the campus police link on www.weatherfordisd.com.

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