TCSS continues discussion on SRO agreements

Published 10:30 am Thursday, March 16, 2023

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BY: Olivia Johnson

During Monday’s Troup County School Board work session, the board updated its discussion on school resource officer (SRO) agreements with the City of LaGrange, Troup County, the City of West Point and the City of Hogansville.

Superintendent Brian Shumate said the board received SRO estimates from West Point and Hogansville at approximately $49,000 per officer. The costs are prorated for the 191.25 days officers would be in schools and not handling work outside of the school system.

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“If we prorate our SROs, based on the number of days they worked for us versus how much they’re available for regular police work in the communities, it’s about 191 days out of the 260 days. The two numbers came back at about right at $49,000,” Shumate said.

Shumate said the City of LaGrange is asking for $66,332 per SRO. The amount comes from a breakdown of costs provided previously by former Police Chief Lou Dekmar.

“We made a recommendation to add on SROs at our elementary schools back in the fall with the assumption that the price would be the same at about $56,000 per SRO, which was the same price that had been paid to both the sheriff’s office and City of LaGrange for a number of years,” Shumate said.

Once agreements are reached, it’s anticipated that TCSS will have 19 total SROs — up from 8 currently — as the school system adds officers to elementary schools. LaGrange would have 10 (up 5), the Troup County Sheriff’s Office would have 7 (up 4) and Hogansville and West Point would have one apiece.

The board has received cost breakdowns from all parties except the Troup County Sheriff’s Office, but it’s expected that the amount will be in the same ballpark as the city of LaGrange.

The board is expected to further discuss the SRO agreements at Thursday’s board meeting.

In other safety related discussion, TCSS School Safety Director Steve Heaton provided an update on staffing for the weapons detections systems, which were approved at January’s board meeting. 

Heaton said the first order of the weapons detection systems should be in by mid-April.