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School board approves funding to expedite six new school resource officers

At the June 23, 2022 school board meeting, the Roanoke County School Board approved $180,000 to expedite the process of adding six additional School Resource Officers (SROs) to elementary schools in Roanoke County provided by the Roanoke County Sheriff’s Office.  This is in addition to SROs currently provided by the Roanoke County Police Department for secondary schools.

“Having armed, trained, law enforcement-certified School Recourse Officers at our schools is an indispensable component of school safety and security,” said Dr. Ken Nicely, superintendent of Roanoke County Public Schools.

“While some areas of the state and country have sought to scale back the number of SROs on school campuses, we affirm the need for having SRO's on our school campuses and believes that, when they respond in a timely manner according to their training, SRO's are an essential asset to public safety and security at our schools. The School Board and administration have established a goal and have requested that an SRO be provided for each RCPS school as a public safety need,” Dr. Nicely added.

“Over the past four years, RCPS has established a strong partnership with public safety officials in Roanoke County, including Roanoke County Police, Roanoke County Fire and EMS, Roanoke County Sheriff's Office, and Vinton Police,” said David Linden, chairman of the Roanoke County School Board.

Together, we take school safety and security seriously, working through the Roanoke County School Safety Taskforce and investing countless hours and resources planning, preparing, and proactively taking steps to enhance safety and security.  The School Board will request that the Board of Supervisors assume the responsibility for funding these additional SROs as a public safety need,” said Mr. Linden.

The Sheriff’s Office will be reimbursed for the cost of equipment and salary for the new SROs.