School Resource Officer
The School Resource Officer Program is a collaborative effort between the Atherton Police Department and Atherton schools to provide youth with a high level of service beyond traditional law enforcement services.
Description of General Duties
The program is designed to provide services beyond traditional enforcement efforts, to include counseling, referral, and educational support programs designed to deter crime. Intervention efforts are concentrated at “at risk’ youth to identify those students in jeopardy of joining gangs and/or starting a life of crime. The SRO acts as the liaison between the school, police department and the community.
The SRO works collaboratively with school officials acting in a capacity of another staff member. The SRO attends management, teacher, parent meetings and student meetings to develop a close working relationship with those groups. The SRO is an active participant in all disciplinary interventions with the students to provide school staff with his or her professional input and to help determine whether criminal charges are prudent or that other forms of intervention, such as a counseling referral may be the more prudent option. The SRO participates in gang mediation, training in conflict resolution and restorative justice, student crime prevention, and truancy abatement. Additional focus will be on working with school officials in developing safe school policies and reviewing physical changes to the campus.
Additionally, the SRO acts an active responder to in-progress incidents upon the campus, acting as a liaison between school officials and responding patrol units. The SRO confers with school management on the type of police response to the campus and on how to best quell the incident and return the campus to an efficient learning environment.
Community Policing Activities
The SRO works with school staff, parents, youth and the community to address issues that impact the school campus and/or the neighboring community. The SRO meets with these entities regularly to maintain effective lines of communication and to establish himself/herself as a trusted member of the school community.