NASRO Testimony Before Senate
The National Association of School Resource Officers releases extensive report on the effectiveness of school based policing.
(Hoover, AL – October 15, 2012) – NASRO is pleased to announce the release of To Protect and Educate: The School Resource Officer and the Prevention of Violence in Schools.
The presence of school resource officers in schools has become an important part of the duty to protect children on campus. Parents and local officials in communities around the world enjoy an effective relationship with local police as part of a school safety plan.
Statistically speaking, the effectiveness of school resource officers is firmly established. For example, in America, school crime is down: incidences of school-associated deaths, violence, nonfatal victimization, and theft have all diminished since local police began partnering with school officials. Once schools are made safe, the campuses tend to stay safe. Even juvenile arrests go down, falling nearly 50% during the period of expansion of School Resource Officer programs.
Speaking as a practical matter, the presence of local police on campus is essential. The specialized knowledge of the law, local and national crime trends and safety threats, people and places in the community, and the local juvenile-justice system combine to make police critical members of schools’ policy-making teams when it comes to environmental safety planning and facilities management, school-safety policy, and emergency response preparedness.
In order to fully realize the benefits of the presence of local police, the officers must be trained properly. Officers’ law-enforcement knowledge and skill combine with specialized SRO training for their duties in the education setting. This training focuses on the special nature of school campuses, student needs and characteristics, and the educational and custodial interests of school personnel. SROs, as a result, possess a skill set unique among both law enforcement and education personnel that enables SROs to protect the community and the campus while supporting the educational mission. In addition to traditional law-enforcement tasks, such as searching a student suspected of carrying a weapon or investigating whether drugs have been brought on campus, SROs’ daily activities can include a wide range of supportive activities and programs depending upon the type of school to which an SRO is assigned.
Trained and committed police officers are well-suited to effectively protect and serve the school community. These school resource officers contribute to the safe-schools team by ensuring a safe and secure campus, educating students about law-related topics, and mentoring students as counselors and role models. Over the last 23 years, the National Association of School Resource Officers has become the world leader in school based policing and have trained thousands of officers based on the Triad model of school based policing.
For a complete copy of To Protect and Educate: The School Resource Officer and the Prevention of Violence in Schools visit the NASRO website at www.nasro.org. If you prefer a printed copy of the report, please contact the NASRO office at (888) 316-2776.