Do you have kids in high school or middle school? How about elementary school kids? Have you noticed an Apex Police officer at your kids Apex School? Did you know WCPSS only pays a fraction of the cost for a SRO (School Resource Officer) and it is mainly funded by the town. Hard to believe but more on that later.
Last budget year which ended in June and our current budget year started July 1, 2018 I advocated for the town to develop and pay for a SRO at all our elementary schools as we didn’t have one at any elementary school. It passed 2-0 in the personnel committee that Nicole Dozier and I sit on and the council approved the position request afterward. This is an important presence at our schools not only for safety but for community outreach and building relationships with our kids. We started the program for our elementary schools at the beginning of the school year with one officer and I am excited to see how this program develops and impacts our kids into next year and beyond. The plan was to have officer Patel evaluate the program and make recommendations to the police chief on how to fully implement the program at all our elementary schools to be most effective. Until yesterday at our annual town budget workshop Ms. Killingsworth and Ms. Dozier want to put this program on hold for our elementary schools. They want more community discussion about the presence of a police officer at our elementary school. Below Officer Patel was the mystery reader in my son’s elementary school class one day last week! If you see one of them at your kids’ school make sure and say hello.
Did you know WCPSS only provides partial payment to provide this safety and valuable community resource in their schools. Crazy right!? the town is paying for the safety and presence of a police officer at WCPSS facilities! Personally I am absolutely ok with this expense if WCPSS won’t pay for it as I think they should but here are the numbers for Apex. For the 10 individuals in the School Resource Unit the town pays over $800,000 for salary and benefits. WCPSS only pays the town around $100,000 to provide this protection and service to our students. Please email all council your support for a SRO presence at every elementary school. As always if you would like to meet over coffee to discuss this or anything about Apex I’m happy to meet with you.