Eureka Springs schools to get first school resource officer
Eureka Springs School District will have a new face at their three schools in the upcoming school year. The city and the school district are partnering up to get a full-time school resource officer.
Eureka Springs Superintendent Bryan Pruitt said, "All of the recent activities that has happened across the nation, our board just felt like it was time for us to maybe invest in that."
Currently Eureka Springs police officers direct traffic and sweep the schools to make sure doors are locked. But now the school district wants added protection.
Pruitt said, "We want our school, our students, our staff to be safe and feel comfortable and they're protected so we can increase their learning."
The school resource officer will be in charge of keeping 700 people safe throughout the three schools.
The superintendent said he wants the person they choose to be more than just a police officer to the students.
"Not only be a school resource officer, " Pruitt said, "But an educator, a counselor, a friend and then someone to protect them."
Parents we spoke with said they are in favor of the school hiring more protection for their kids.
Ruth Goodwin-Hager, a parent of a student, said, "We've been such a small town and a small school for so long, it wasn't really necessary. I'm not even sure if it's necessary now. But I think it's the way of the future. We should all have them I guess."
The officer will be paid around $50-60,000 a year, but the superintendent and some parents agree:
John Cummings, a parent of Eureka Springs students, said, "I think it's going to be alright. It's going to cost a little extra money, but you can't put a price on safety."