Florissant PD Places Officer at Northwest Middle School; Cross Keys Middle Also has SRO
By Carol Arnett
The Florissant Police Department will be providing a School Resource Officer (SRO) to Northwest Middle School, a Hazelwood School District school within the Florissant city limits.
Police Chief Timothy Lowery and Hazelwood Superintendent Grayling Tobias signed an agreement placing the officer on Jan. 3.
“The Hazelwood School District has reaffirmed our commitment to several different groups, including the Florissant Police Department,” said Tobias. “The District has also re-examined and reviewed all of our programs, including the placement of a school resource officer at Northwest Middle School.”
“The safety of children while in school is a priority of the Florissant Police Department,” Lowery said. “I am proud to work with Dr. Tobias in this endeavor.”
Northwest Middle School is the only Hazelwood middle school in Florissant. Cross Keys Middle School, in the Ferguson-Florissant School District, is also in the city limits. It has had an SRO for several years. Mayor Schneider also stated that Florissant will continue to work with the Ferguson-Florissant District “to insure the safety of all our school children.”
Officer Dustin Owen, a twelve-year veteran of the Florissant Police Department, began his new assignment as SRO at Northwest Middle on Jan. 7.
The Police Department’s Communications and Media Relations Officer, Andy Haarmann, explained that an SRO spends his or her day in the school. Officer Owen will check in at the police department in the morning and pick up a police car, then will head to the school, Haarmann said.
“He will build a rapport with the students and teachers and get to know them,” Haarmann said. The goal is that students and staff are comfortable with the officer, and will inform him of any problems.
He will also investigate any crimes at the school. “No one is better equipped to investigate than the SRO who knows the people involved,” Haarmann said.
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