The Valley School District has about 600 students. Grades K-12 are all under one roof, surrounded by farmland in rural Jerome County. But despite its remote setting and track record of safety, school officials there are worried about the possibility of a school shooting.
“I have to say that the Parkland shooting did spur the discussion on and was probably the piece that said, ‘Hey, let’s spring for a student resource officer,’” says Eric Anderson, the district superintendent.
He says after the mass shooting at a high school in Parkland, Florida this past February, the school board looked at different safety measures, including installing news locks and getting cameras. But in the end, they decided to invest in a full-time school resource officer.
“We’ve picked the right person at the right time that’s going to do everything in his power to keep this school safe.”
Anderson says the district is paying half of the officer’s salary, $24,000, and Jerome County Sheriff’s Office is paying the other half.
Valley School District isn’t alone. According to the Times-News, three other districts in south-central Idaho are considering hiring new school resource officers.
Find reporter Frankie Barnhill on Twitter @FABarnhill
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