School Resource Officers

Overview

Kentucky Revised Statute 158.441 defines an SRO as “a sworn law enforcement officer who has specialized training to work with youth at a school site.” It also stipulates that “the officer shall be employed through a contract between a local law enforcement agency and a school district.” The statutory language was extremely important to the development of the SRO program for three reasons: 1) it required SROs to have specialized training; 2) it recognized the importance of having a written contract between the two agencies to clarify the duties of the officer; and 3) it formally recognized SROs as a specialized field of law enforcement.
There are currently 476 reported SRO positions in 152 school districts plus Model Lab School at EKU. This is an increase of 11 districts from FY19. Over 50% of them are employed by their respective sheriff’s department. A few school districts (20.5%) have their own special law enforcement officers (SLEOs) and 30% come from their city or county police departments. Our largest school district, Jefferson County, is currently pending with their SRO program.

For more information contact Lee Ann Morrison at the Kentucky Center for School Safety.

School Resource Officer award winners

“Communities throughout the nation recognize that trained, sworn law enforcement officers assigned to schools make a difference”. (U. S. Department of Justice)

Required SRO Training

The Department of Criminal Justice Training has long offered training that targets the specific needs of school resource officers (SRO). Now, thanks to the School Safety and Resilience Act passed in 2019, that training has been updated and expanded to serve today’s schoolchildren and administrators.

Three levels of training are now offered to active, certified law enforcement serving as school resource officers. All SROs are required to take the SRO 1 in-service course within one year from their assignment date. SRO 2 and SRO 3 will be required as in-service for the following two years.

SRO training includes new topics such as working with special-needs students, mental health awareness and trauma-informed action. Firearms and defensive tactics refresher training also will be included.

ELIGIBILITY:

To attend SRO training, officers must be a Peace Officer Professional Standards-certified, sworn law enforcement officer or a special law enforcement officer appointed pursuant to KRS 61.902.

School Resource Officers Scholarship

SRO Scholarship 1

The Kentucky Association of Schools Resource Officers (KYASRO) is offering two (2) $500.00 scholarships for post-secondary education to seniors.  Students are nominated by their School Resource Officer (SRO) based on the student’s contribution to safety or crime prevention in his/her school. It is suggested that SROs collaborate with their high school counselors and other school administrators/staff regarding qualified applicants. (Deadline for scholarships & awards is Friday, April 16, 2021)

School Resource Officer Annual Report

The current SRO Annual Report was published in May, 2016. In the spring of 2016, researchers from the Kentucky Center for School Safety (KCSS) conducted a panel study examining the attributes of School Resource Officers throughout the state of Kentucky. Valuable information can be gleaned from within this 29 page report on current trends, practices and funding levels.

Kentucky Association of School Resource Officers

The Kentucky Association of School Resource Officers has a Board of Directors consisting of fifteen members to direct that organization. Download KYASRO Brochure

KYASRO Regional Map

The KYASRO Regional Map is divided into six regions. These regions are used for training and networking purposes.

Crime Prevention Month

October is Crime Prevention Month, a perfect time to Celebrate Safe Communities (CSC). Celebrate Safe Communities is a national initiative of the National Crime Prevention Council and the U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Assistance, and was developed in partnership with the National Sheriffs’ Association in 2008. CSC is an annual event.

School Resource Officer Resources

NEW WEBSITEThe Kentucky Association of School Resource Officers, or KYASRO, is dedicated to the support of SROs throughout the Commonwealth. KYASRO seeks to off a forum for the exchange of knowledge, ideas, and information regarding best practices for School Based Law Enforcement Officers.

Kentucky Revised Statute 158.441 requires that the local law enforcement agency and schools have a written contract. A model SRO contract has been developed and can be modified to meet the needs of individual districts and agencies. You may obtain a copy of this template from KCSS.

THE IMPORTANCE OF SCHOOL RESOURCE OFFICERS (a brief highlighting the positive impact of SROs authored by The Institute for Preventive Strategies ) School Resource Officers (SRO’s) play a very important role in the safety of our schools. Collaboration between schools and law enforcement is a major step to increasing school security and preventing acts of terrorism or violence within schools. The Institute for Preventive Strategies is a national service of the Center for Rural Development, a not-for-profit organization headquartered in Somerset Kentucky.

Model SRO programs across the state that can provide important advice and information for new or fledgling program. The Center has developed a set of standards for SRO programs which can be used to assess the quality of the programs.

Article: School Resource Officers: A Vital Part of School Safety