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[ATG] Zoeller: Clarksville Community School Corp. receives $50K to add School Resource Officer
Start Date: 11/8/2013 All Day
End Date: 11/8/2013
Entry Description

CLARKSVILLE, Ind. – The State of Indiana has begun awarding grant funding for school resource officers and other school safety measures under the new grant program that Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller had proposed and recommended last spring. Joined by leaders from the local school corporation and police department, Zoeller announced today that the Clarksville Community School Corporation received a $50,000 grant to create an SRO position.

The Secured School Safety Board on which Zoeller is a member voted Oct. 23 to approve and fund grant applications from 116 Indiana schools to create or expand school resource officer (SRO) programs. The board also funded 196 applications for safety equipment and 18 applications for threat assessments.  Those funding options were established under Senate Enrolled Act 1, the two-year, $20 million grant program that Zoeller and State Sen. Pete Miller (R-Avon) had proposed in January as a funding source for school resource officers and school safety. The Legislature passed the bill in April, Gov. Mike Pence signed it into law and grant awards are currently being distributed.

“Schools throughout Indiana have shown strong interest in creating or expanding school resource officer programs, which underscores the findings of a needs assessment study my office conducted last November that found pent-up demand for SROs among school administrators and parents. School resource officers not only deter many of the problems in our schools but also can improve students’ respect for law enforcement. Hoosiers should thank their legislators for providing funding for the grants to meet local needs,” Zoeller said. 

School Resource Officers are trained law enforcement officers who have been through the police academy and then receive an additional 40 hours of certification in working with students in schools. 

"Clarksville Schools is excited to receive this grant,” said Kim Knott, Superintendent of Clarksville Community School Corp. “We know that Attorney General Zoeller was a big proponent of this legislation and a true advocate for collaboration between local government units to place resource officers in schools. Clarksville is proud that we can be an example of how these partnerships can take place to benefit the school and the community."

Greater Clark County Schools also received a $50,000 state grant to employ an SRO.

Zoeller serves on the Secured School Safety Board, which over the summer developed and implemented a grant application process. Schools had to submit their grant applications by a Sept. 30 deadline and the board screened the proposals and funded those best matching the criteria. The board heard 128 grant requests specifically for SROs and funded 116 requests, including Mishawaka’s. In the first round of grant funding, schools with enrollments of 1,000 or more could apply for grants of up to $50,000 to create or expand school resource officer positions; schools with enrollments of fewer than 1,000 could apply for grants of up to $35,000. Schools can apply again in subsequent rounds included under the total $20 million appropriation over two fiscal years.

Senate Enrolled Act 1 which Zoeller advocated and Miller introduced also legally defined school resource officers and established requirements for their training. The National Association of School Resource Officers (NASRO) is a certified program and has taken the lead on training SROs in Indiana. Over the summer, Zoeller visited several communities around the state and encouraged school corporations to apply for the grants to create new SRO positions or expand existing SRO programs. 

The needs assessment study the Attorney General’s Office conducted in November 2012 prior to the Newtown Connecticut school shooting tragedy found that school administrators and law enforcement officers around the state would be interested in creating or expanding school resource officer programs, if additional funding were available. Zoeller and Miller cited that needs assessment study Jan. 3 in proposing Senate Bill 1. The legislation Miller introduced later passed by large margins in the Legislature and was signed into law by the governor.

“Public safety is the number one duty of government, and we are grateful to school officials and school resource officers around the state who helped make the case for SRO funding.  We appreciate the efforts of Senator Pete Miller, the Indiana General Assembly, Governor Mike Pence and the Indiana Department of Homeland Security in bringing this idea to fruition so parents and schools will have enhanced options for protecting schoolchildren,” Zoeller said.

NOTE:  More information about the Attorney General’s needs assessment study of November 2012 is at this link http://www.in.gov/activecalendar/EventList.aspx?fromdate=5/1/2013&todate=5/31/2013&display=Month&type=public&eventidn=98771&view=EventDetails&information_id=181145

 -30-

Contact Information:
Name: Bryan Corbin
Phone: 317.233.3970
Email: Bryan.Corbin@atg.in.gov
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  • IN.gov Category:
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  • Agency Name
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