By David Fleet
Atlas Twp. —On Monday night the township board of trustees voted 4-0 to approve a contract with the Goodrich School District and the Genesee County Sheriff Office.
The township, sheriff office along with the Goodrich School district connived to discuss a contract for funding and requirements of the School Resource Officer. The contract begins Jan. 1, 2023-Sept. 30, 2024.
On Monday night the school board of trustees voted 7-0 to join in a contract with Atlas Township and the Genesee County Sheriff Office for a school resource officer. The first for the district.
On March 11, 2019 interviews for a school resource officer were conducted and GCSO Atlas Township Deputy Casey Seeley was selected. Seeley began April 8 at a cost of $123, 341 of which the school was responsible for 70 percent or $88,101, while the township covered 30 percent for a 21 month period of time. Of that time 15 months were in the school district.
That contract expired June 30, 2020.
“The sheriff office has also provided the township a schedule of when the deputies are on and off duty,” said Shirley Kautman-Jones, township supervisor. “The township does not participate in additional duties of the officers such as football games and special events. The school district will contract separately with the sheriff office.”
The cost is $246,247 to cover the cost of assigning one full-time School Resource Officer to the Goodrich Area School District for the 21 months. The township pays 30 percent or $73,874 of the total and the school 70 percent or $172,372.
Genesee County Sheriff Chris Swanson said by year end 12 school county school districts will have School Resource Officer officers.
“The SRO position at Goodrich School is vital,” said Swanson. “The amount of activity we follow up on coupled with the school administration keep people safe regardless of what grade, or what the statement made is, it’s vital to have an SRO. We have a protocol for all our SROs, if there is any threat or any statements made we follow up. And the SRO is a key factor. We are thankful the board saw the value in the SRO, we see the value in it. Our office, Wayne Wright, Goodrich Superintendent the township are in concert to keep the school safe.”
Currently, there are 11, soon to be 12, school resource officers in Genesee County serving at the GISD, Goodrich and Clio school districts in addition to a special Genesee County Circuit Court school. Mt. Morris Consolidated School District will be adding an SRO this fall.
By David Fleet