S E A R C H   
 
The Role of the School Resource Officer
 

SRO Definition:


The Role of an SRO


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It is not uncommon for an SRO to be asked the question: What do you do all day?

An SRO has a diverse role is the school community and has many duties and responsibilities.

We have defined a School Resource Officer as a sworn officer assigned to a school on a long-term basis trained to perform three major roles: law enforcement officer, law-related counselor and law-related educator. In addition, the officer works in collaboration with the school and the community as a resource for safety and security issues.

As a law enforcement officer, the school becomes the officer's beat. The SRO assists the school administration in maintaining a safe and secure environment. School administrators benefit from the SROs training, knowledge and experience is handling situations involving possible weapons violations or in the identification of controlled dangerous substances. The SRO provides a highly visible presence to deter or identify trespassers on campus. In addition, SROs provide a service to the surrounding community by addressing concerns such as loitering, speeding or loud car radios. The students when going to or from school often generate these types of community complaints.

SROs are responsible for investigating violations of criminal law and when appropriate make arrests. An SROs sworn duty to enforce the law does not contradict the need for the SRO to be positive role model -- it in fact supports it. It is essential for a SRO to endorse high moral standards and use good judgment and discretion. Through this, students learn and understand what a professional police officer does.

It is important to note that SROs are not school disciplinarians. SROs should not be involved in investigating school rule violations: For example, a student cheating on a test. Violations of school rules are the responsibility of the principal and faculty. If a violation of a school rule is also a criminal offense the SRO may conduct a concurrent investigation and take the appropriate action under the policies and procedures set forth by their police agency.


Implementation Activity

Can you identify areas of conflict which may arise if an SRO is asked to enforce school rules?

Make a template or list of how the SRO should work to resolve the potential conflict that can arise when they observe violations of school rules using the following example: an SRO observes student-wearing clothing which violates the school dress code policy.


 

 

 

 

 


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SRO Defined
Building a Foundation
Context for Tutorial
Relevant Audiences
About the Author