The Union Recorder

Local News

February 21, 2013

School Resource Officers work to protect, educate

MILLEDGEVILLE — Dealing with issues such as contact bullying, cyber bullying, fights and threats is almost a daily challenge for School Resource Officers (SRO). 

Baldwin County Schools implemented SROs in the early 1990s. Heightened social media presence in many students’ daily lives coupled with other outside forces and news of school shootings in other communities often changes the landscape.

In order to keep a priority of ensuring a safe school environment for all faculty, staff, students and visitors alike, sheriff’s deputies Tony Holland and Jason Simmons work to form relationships with school personnel and youth while educating on handling negative situations and promoting positive behavior.

Holland has been the school resource office for Oak Hill Middle School since 2008. On a daily basis, he patrols the interior and exterior of school grounds, teaches the Exploring Public Safety course, visits classrooms, and counsels students in an effort to keep the current student population of around 1,250 comfortable and safe in the school setting.

“The idea of the public safety class was an idea by [Oak Hill Principal Dr. Linda Ramsey] and myself; we started the class just this year. We wanted to get more involved with the kids to let them know I’m here not only to be the police, but also their friend,” Holland said. “Most of these kids haven’t been around tragedy or have ever experienced it until the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting.”

At Baldwin High School, Simmons said the magnitude of behavior issues and incidents amongst the 1,350 students are on another level compared to middle school.

“When students come to high school, things change in their lives and they’re trying to find themselves. Nobody holds their hand while they try to figure out life right here in this building; you’re dealing with a whole different type of person compared to a middle-schooler,” said Simmons, who has been the high school’s SRO for three years. “The top three issues here are bullying, conflict and smoking. Cyber bullying is a big problem with our children today. A lot of kids have to deal with contact bullying like assaults, but most of the incidents derive from cyber bullying. [SROs] face those challenges daily, like threats via telephone, but it just makes it difficult for us. We also have a lot of thefts.”

Text Only
Local News
Poll
AP Video
Raw: Massive Dust Storm Covers Phoenix 12-hour Cease-fire in Gaza Fighting Begins Raw: Bolivian Dancers Attempt to Break Record Raw: Israel, Palestine Supporters Rally in US Raw: Palestinians and Israeli Soldiers Clash Raw: Air Algerie Flight 5017 Wreckage Virginia Governor Tours Tornado Aftermath Judge Faces Heat Over Offer to Help Migrant Kids Kerry: No Deal Yet on 7-Day Gaza Truce Kangaroo Goes Missing in Oklahoma More M17 Bodies Return, Sanctions on Russia Grow Gaza Residents Mourn Dead Amid Airstrikes Raw: Deadly Tornado Hits Virginia Campground Ohio State Marching Band Chief Fired After Probe Raw: Big Rig Stuck in Illinois Swamp Cumberbatch Brings 'Penguins' to Comic-Con Raw: Air Algerie Crash Site in Mali Power to Be Restored After Wash. Wildfire Crashed Air Algerie Plane Found in Mali Israel Mulls Ceasefire Amid Gaza Offensive
Facebook
Twitter Updates
Follow us on twitter
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
Stocks
NDN Video
Big Weekend For Atlanta Braves In Cooperstown - @TheBuzzeronFox Chapter Two: Becoming a first-time director What's Got Jack Black Freaking Out at Comic-Con? Doctors Remove 232 Teeth From Teen's Mouth Bradley Cooper Explains His Voice in 'Guardians of the Galaxy' Deja vu: Another NYPD officer choke-holding a suspect 'Fifty Shades of Grey': Watch the Super Sexy First Trailer Now! Reports: Ravens RB Ray Rice Suspended For 1st 2 Games Of The Season Air Algerie plane with 119 on board missing over Mali Diamond Stone, Malik Newman, Josh Jackson and others showcase talent Free Arturo - The World's Saddest Polar Bear A Look Back at Batman On Film Through The Years LeBron James -- Dropped $2k On Cupcake Apology ... Proceeds To Benefit Charity Snoop Dogg Says He Smoked Weed at the White House Raw: Fight Breaks Out in Ukraine Parliament Chris Pratt Interrupts Interview To French Braid Intern's Hair Shirtless Super Mario Balotelli Dances While Ironing - @TheBuzzeronFOX Whoa! Watch "Housewives" Star Do the Unthinkable LeBron apologizes to neighbors with cupcakes Justin Bieber In Calvin Klein Underwear Shoot