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SRO contracts end with three municipalities

School Board votes to end SRO contracts with three of four local municipalities
Posted on 06/23/2020

In-depth school safety review to take place

The Edmonds School District School Board unanimously voted to end School Resource Officers (SRO) contracts with the Edmonds, Lynnwood and Mountlake Terrace police departments on Tuesday, June 23, 2020. The Board will wait until August to decide whether or not to keep its SRO contract with the Snohomish County Sheriff’s Office over concerns of response time to reach Lynnwood High School should there be an emergency.

 

The Board plans to critically review the safety plans currently in place and vows to make any and all necessary changes for all students to feel safe in school.  Just after being sworn in as the new Edmonds School District Superintendent in tonight’s meeting, Dr. Gustavo Balderas weighed in on safety in our schools.

 

“I am grateful for the Board putting as much time and thought into this topic as they have,” said Superintendent Dr. Balderas. “We agree that student safety is a top priority. I look forward to working with the Board to review the overall safety and wellness plans currently in place. I will then work with students, staff, families and community members to propose a new and improved safety plan for all of our students.”

 

Dr. Balderas has asked for a one-year period to bring a new proposed plan to the Board. His intention for the timeline is to be very thoughtful and very intentional in the work that needs to take place.

 

Listening to the community

Last week, the School Board held a special virtual meeting and invited students, staff, families and community members to share their thoughts and experiences on school safety and SROs in high schools. More than 140 people registered and attended the meeting, with several speaking on both sides of the issue. The Board also sent a survey to high school students to get more input.

 

“It was critical that the Board heard and continue to hear from our students on this and other issues,” said School Board President Dr. Deborah Kilgore. “It is unacceptable that students are hurting and feel unsafe in our schools. We are determined to review our current school safety plans and will make the systemic changes necessary to ensure the safety and wellness of all students.”

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