The Star Beacon; Ashtabula, Ohio

Local News

February 21, 2013

Buckeye BOE considers hiring resource officer

ASHTABULA TOWNSHIP — The concept of a school resource officer could be tested at Buckeye Local Schools this spring.

Superintendent Joseph Spiccia presented the idea to the board of education during its meeting Tuesday evening. Spiccia said having a uniformed, armed officer in the school buildings would increase safety and security while helping students build a trusting relationship with law enforcement.

Spiccia said Ashtabula Area City Schools and Pymatuning Valley Local Schools are the only districts in the county with resource officers. About 150 northeast Ohio schools have a resource officer.

“It’s a relatively common practice in school districts,” Spiccia told the board.

The officer would work for the school district as a contract employee. The district would not provide benefits.

An officer who worked seven hours a day during the school year at $22 an hour would cost the district about $27,400. Spiccia told the board to budget about $30,000 because the officer would also work football games and other special details. The school’s athletic boosters have traditionally footed the bill for those special assignments.

As to how the district would pay for the officer, Spiccia said it probably would have to come out of the general fund. However, the district could apply for grants and other funding opportunities. He said the COPS grant, which requires a local match, cannot be used for personnel.

Spiccia said that the officer would be associated with the Ashtabula County Sheriff’s Department and that Sheriff William Johnson provided him with a list of candidates. The department would pick up the cost of liability insurance, communications equipment and a cruiser, Spiccia told the board.

The cruiser, however, could be in jeopardy. County commissioners recently questioned the expense of the county providing cruisers and fuel for resource officers, which are not employed the department. Spiccia said having a cruiser parked at a school would act as a deterrent in itself.

The superintendent suggested the board take a vote on the question at the March meeting and perhaps test the concept during the spring months of the school year.

Board member Mary Wisnyai said there have been several fights at the high school this school year, and she feels that having a resource officer could help curtail that kind of activity. The officer would be available to all four buildings in the district. Spiccia said having an officer on site at one of the buildings would help decrease response time if there is a problem in a different Buckeye school.

1
Text Only
Local News
Canoe Race and Ashtabula Easter Events
Good Friday Cross Walks and Easter Egg Hunts
Spring Comes Alive
Ashtabula Spring Cleaning
The Taping of the Teacher: A sticky Sitation
Saturday Fun in Ashtabula County March 22, 2014
American Red Cross Ashtabula County Heroes Breakfast
Rotary Club Dodge Ball Tournament
18th Annual Polar Bear Plunge at Geneva State Park
End of year weather extremes
Christmas 2013
Harpersfield Barn Fire
Route 11 Rescue Plymouth Township
Ashtabula Fire
House Ads
AP Video
NDN Video
Viral: It's Not Pitbull - It's Amy Poehler! Raw: Leopard Bites Man in India Jenna Dewan-Tatum Strips Down Rise of the Milkbots TRENDING: Brian Williams Raps 'Gin and Juice' on ‘Tonight Show’ Middle School heroes rescue students from burning bus WHOPPER OF FISHING STORY: Florida man catches massive Mako shark Maks Chmerkovskiy's "DWTS" Meltdown The many faces of Mike Woodson Ape Builds A Fire And Toasts Marshmallows In Amazing BBC Video Manchester Utd sack manager David Moyes "RHOA's" Dramatic Brawl High school, College Drug Ring Busted In Montgomery County High Court to Hear Dispute of TV Over Internet Raw: Keflezighi, Jeptoo Win Boston Marathon Teen hitchhikes in wheel well of flight from California to Hawaii Lindsay Lohan's Jaw-Dropping Secret President Sends Message To Boston And Marathon Runners LA Pastor Attracts Churchgoers with Pot Lauren Stoner Shows Off Her Incredible Bikini Body