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Page County Schools to consider adding additional school resource officers next year

Published: May. 26, 2022 at 8:25 PM EDT
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LURAY, Va. (WHSV) - Schools around the Shenandoah Valley continue to evaluate safety measures following the deadly school shooting in Texas on Tuesday.

In Page County, some parents have expressed concern over the lack of a school resource officer, or SRO, at one of the county’s schools.

Page County has nine schools and currently just seven SROs with Luray Elementary and Middle Schools sharing an officer.

“I think that every school should have one so no matter what the priority is keeping our kids safe. So I think that they need to find that somewhere in their budget,” said Ashley Price, a Page County parent.

Page County Public Schools superintendent Dr. Antonia Fox said that the division will look into ways to improve school security over the summer including possibly adding an SRO.

“We’re certainly looking at it we’ve had a couple of parents give us a call with some concerns so we’re certainly gonna take a look at it and see if we can work with our towns and our county to maybe put a permanent SRO there for next school year,” said Dr. Fox.

Ashley Price said she hopes the school division will do whatever it takes to keep schools safe next year even if it means increased spending.

“Everything they can do to keep our kids safe. You know, add an officer, just any different thing that they could do that they’re not already doing to improve the safety of our children,” she said.

Dr. Fox said that the school division will evaluate its security protocols and consider all of its options over the summer when it comes to improving school security for next year.

“There are grants out there for school resource officers where police departments or sheriff’s offices can apply for different grants in partnership with school divisions so I think right now we just need to engage in a conversation about what options do we have,” said Fox.

Fox added that said grants would allow the school division to split the cost of hiring an additional SRO with police.

The Page County Sheriff’s Office and town police departments in the county have increased patrols at schools in the days following the shooting.

The school division has been extra cautious over the last few days and will look to continue improving its security.

“The Department of Education and the Department of Juvenile Justice have released information about how you can reassess your safety protocols so we will definitely be doing that over the next couple of weeks just to take a look at what we’re doing and what we can do better,” said Fox.

Fox said Page County Schools views school safety as a partnership between schools, police, parents, and the community. She sends the condolences of Page County Schools to those affected by the shooting in Texas.

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