Seminole County Sheriff Donald Eslinger and School Superintendent Walt Griffin are seeking to increase the number of School Resource Officers at elementary schools and implement a new safety awareness program for students. A news release from the Sheriff’s Office Tuesday said that “…10 new, full-time, school resource deputies [would be assigned] to 22 public elementary schools” and would put an assigned deputy in every Seminole County school, under the proposal. Sheriff Eslinger said, “This is not just about placing armed guards in schools; it’s about assisting parents, continuing to integrate deputies into the community, and equipping our students with the right safety skills to make informed decisions in life.” School Superintendent Griffin added that, “A positive relationship between students and law enforcement will benefit our students, parents and our community.”
In addition to being assigned as law enforcement liaisons to the schools, the new school resource officers will also deliver a 10-week, interactive program called Focus on Safety to fifth grade students. The program covers topics such as substance abuse, gang and violence awareness, bullying, and internet safety. The proposal is scheduled to be discussed by the School Board, and would cost $700,000 to be split between the school district and the Sheriff’s Office.
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