School Resource Deputies
The Parker County School Resource Officers [SROs] are certified law enforcement officers who are assigned full-time to the local school districts. For this, the SROs receive many hours of specialized training.
Like many adults, some students view police officers solely as enforcement officers of the law. By establishing rapport with their school’s SRO at a young age, students will not only gain a positive role model, but also a better understanding of a Deputy Sheriff’s many duties and responsibilities.
Likewise, SROs will gain a better perspective of the youth in their school. By carefully assessing the needs of individual students, SROs will be more aware of the development of unhealthy or destructive behavioral patterns. Through early intervention, it is possible in many cases to redirect negative behaviors before they cause a student to be referred to the Criminal Justice System.
SROs have many duties, including:
- Maintaining a safe and healthy work and learning environment for staff and students
- Building rapport with students and staff
- Providing educational information both in and out of the classroom on various topics, such as:
- Texas State laws (penal, traffic, education code, health and safety code)
- Drug and alcohol abuse
- Traffic safety
- Suicide prevention
- Family violence
- Child abuse
- Law enforcement as a career
- Tobacco education
- Providing extra patrols on weekends for juveniles engaged in illegal activities (parties with underage drinking, illegal purchase of alcohol and tobacco, criminal mischief)
- Counseling students, parent and school staff to resolve problems or misunderstandings in order to reduce the possibility of criminal activity and violence
- Assisting with existing school programs such as athletic events, dances, and PTA programs
- Establishing programs that benefit the students, school district, Sheriff’s Office, and community
- Serving as a link between the school district and law enforcement agencies and other social services
- Assisting the Juvenile Investigator with juvenile cases during the school year and summer break
- Providing extra traffic enforcement and control in school zones and school districts
- Deterring criminal activity during passing periods, lunch break, before and after school (inside and outside school)
Students are encouraged to seek the personalized attention of SROs. Each officer is specially trained to conduct individual or group sessions. SROs are available for conferences with students, parents and faculty members. All this helps to prevent delinquent behavior – a primary goal of the program.
Additional goals for the SRO program:
- Build rapport with the students
- Give students a chance to interact with law enforcement officers
- Create, start an expand programs with vision and creativity to increase student participation, which will benefit the student, school district, Sheriff’s Office, and community
- Present a positive role model and instilling good citizenship qualities
- Lower crime rates long-term
- Reduce the risk of violence on campus and maintain a safety across the school district
Message from the SROs
A little respect will go a long way. Treat others as you want to be treated. Believe in yourself, no goal in life is too high and learn from your mistakes.
– Cpl. B.J. Sharp
Stay in school! Get a good education. Learn all you can. There is no success without education.
– Deputy Eric Penninger
Don’t be scared to ask a question if you are not sure of the answer. You will never know the answer if you don’t ask.
– Deputy Thomas Downs