Local NewsAn agreement between the Bourbon Town Council and the Triton School Board made it possible to have a student resource officer assigned to the schools on a daily basis. The Triton Board expressed their approval to use funds from the State Secured Safety Grant at their meeting on November 11 and the Bourbon Town Council voted unanimously on November 12 to enter into the agreement.

According to Triton Schools Superintendent, Jeremy Riffle, officers will be assigned daily and will mix up their routine so students and patrons do not get used to them being in just one place. Riffle said, “They are asked to be actively engaged with our students to build relationships.” Riffle shared his comments that he released to both students and staff saying, “This will be in addition to their normal foot patrol that you have become accustomed to seeing. If you see the officer in your building, welcome them and thank them for being there.” He added, “Their purpose is to be visible, build a positive relationship with students, be an asset to our teachers and administrators, proactively keep negative things from happening, and respond to events that are either against the law or school policy.”

Riffle said that each year schools have the opportunity to apply for the grant. He said, “This is a way that schools can continue to build up their ability to keep scholars safe while in and around the school campus.” “This grant was written with two goals: To outfit every school bus with updated cameras to keep our scholar safe while in route to school and for the purpose of keeping our scholars safe while trying to receive an education within our care.”

Riffle said the safety measures were not in response to any problems, but rather to help avoid concerns and continue to keep Triton Schools safe.

Both full-time Bourbon Police Department Officers and Reserve Officers could be assigned to serve as resource officers for the schools. The Bourbon Town Clerk/Treasurer will submit time sheets to the Triton Schools and hourly pay will be paid from the grant funds. It was noted in the Bourbon Council meeting that reserve officers cannot be paid for their services to the Police Department, but will be eligible for pay for their work at the schools.

The agreement clearly spells out how discipline will be handled if there are problems at the schools. It says, “The officer will not be involved in ordinary school discipline, unless it pertains to preventing a potential disruption and/or climate that places students at risk of harm. If the principal believes that in a given situation or incident there is a law violation, the principal may request officer involvement.”

Bourbon Town Attorney advised Police Chief Bill Martin to have officers who may be assigned to the schools to take advantage of any specific training available.

Carol Anders Correspondent