I am looking for help in supporting the school resource officer position in Regional School Unit 19. If you feel passionate about school safety and providing an environment were students feel healthy, you are invited to a school board meeting on Tuesday, March 19, in the Nokomis High School library. The meeting begins at 6:30 p.m. If you cannot attend in person, a letter of support can be sent to: Newport Police Department, 21 Water St., Newport ME 04953 c/o Chief Macdaid.

Now is the time to act. When the new high school opens next year, the population of students will increase from 900 to 1,600. An FBI report released in June 2018 revealed that 2017 had the highest number of incidents on record in any year since they started tracking school shootings in 2000. In 81 percent of school attacks, at least one other person — usually a peer — knew about it ahead of time, and 71 percent of perpetrators targeted their school because they felt bullied.

The main component of a school resource officer’s job is not only school security, but to foster a healthy climate, building strong relationships with students so they will report threats and suspicious behavior. We need to provide students the tools needed to report a problem before it escalates.

If you are a parent or grandparent who is concerned about school safety, please join me Tuesday to express to the school board our concerns. Together as a community we can make a difference.

 

Leonard Macdaid

chief of police

Newport Police Department

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