N.Baltimore pushing for officer in school
Written by JORDAN CRAVENS Sentinel Staff Writer
Wednesday, 25 April 2012 10:01
NORTH BALTIMORE - Village Mayor Mike Julien made a pitch to the North Baltimore Board of Education Tuesday to bring back a school resource officer.
The district had a school resource officer several years ago, but the officer had to be put on "hiatus" due to fiscal issues and the need for the officer to fulfill other police duties.
"As mayor, I believe it is time to revisit the idea," Julien said.
Julien said the officer could be a presence in the schools and address truancy, bullying, provide security at school events, curb drug abuse, and implement and expand safety programs, for example.
The mayor said the village was willing to commit an officer to the school district for at least 24 hours per week during the school year.
The cost for the school resource officer was estimated, at most, to be $45,000 a year, to be split equally between the village and the school district.
Police Chief Allan Baer was also in attendance at the school board meeting and said he is pursuing grants to offset the cost for the officer.
Julien said he would like the school board to approve the school resource officer by early summer so the officer can be at the school beginning next school year.
The officer, and an alternate officer, would undergo training this summer.
"A lot of benefits can come from this," Baer said.
Dr. Bob Falkenstein, principal of the North Baltimore Main Building said he could think of a "zillion ways I would use an SRO in my building."
Also at the meeting, the board approved a bid to tear down the middle school/high school building this summer as the district prepares to move into its new school.
The board awarded the demolition bid to Paschal Bihn & Sons Excavating, Oregon, for $253,000.
It also approved a bid with Quality Environmental Services to remove asbestos from the old building at a cost of $38,273.
A third bid was also approved by the board with Helms and Sons Excavating, Findlay, to complete the road around the new middle school/high school building for $64,500.
Superintendent Marlene North said bids for all three projects came in under estimate.