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Green City R-1 School District Presents on Establishing School Police Department at MARE Fall Conference
Submitted by Tennille Banner
Green City, MO – On Thursday, October 19, 2023, Tennille Banner, Superintendent, and Grace March, School Resource Officer, of the Green City R-1 School District presented at the Missouri Association of Rural Education (MARE) Fall Conference to discuss a critical issue in today’s education landscape – school safety.
The Green City R-1 School District has long been an advocate for fostering a safe and secure learning environment for its students and staff. Recognizing the importance of sharing their knowledge and experience with other rural schools across the state, Banner and March delivered a thought-provoking presentation on the topic of establishing school police departments to commission School Resource Officers (SROs).
School safety is a top priority in school districts throughout Missouri, and the Green City R-1 School District is committed to providing resources to help others achieve this goal. Superintendent Tennille Banner shared the importance of school safety, stating, “Our students’ safety is of the utmost importance. We believe that by sharing our experiences and expertise, we can help other schools in Missouri enhance their security measures.”
During the presentation, Grace March, the School Resource Officer for Green City R-1 School District, shared valuable insights into the role of an SRO in creating a secure school environment and the benefits available to schools who commission their own officers. She emphasized the need for clear communication and collaboration between law enforcement and school administration, as well as the benefits of having a dedicated officer within the school community.
The central focus of their presentation revolved around the steps required to establish a school police department, highlighting the following key elements:
Collaboration: Banner and March stressed the importance of collaboration between school administrators, local law enforcement agencies, and the community to ensure the successful creation of a school police department.
Budgeting and Funding: Setting up a school police department requires budgeting, including securing funding for personnel, training, and equipment.
The presentation was well-received by the MARE Fall Conference attendees, who found the insights and recommendations to be practical and essential for rural school districts looking to improve their safety measures.
“We believe in giving back to the education community,” Superintendent Tennille Banner noted. “Sharing our experiences and offering guidance to our peers is a way for us to fulfill our commitment to the well-being of all students.”
The Green City R-1 School District’s dedication to school safety extends beyond its own students, reflecting the collaborative spirit within Missouri’s educational community. As rural schools across the state grapple with the challenges of ensuring a secure learning environment, presentations like these serve as beacons of hope, offering valuable guidance and support to fellow educators.