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February 5, 2013

Schools, towns team up for ‘30 on 30’

Project puts police officers in schools for 30 minutes each morning, afternoon

FAIRMONT — Local communities are on board to make school security and safety a priority in Marion County.

Andy Neptune, administrative assistant of human resources and student support services for Marion County Schools, gave an update on a project called “30 on 30” during Monday night’s board of education meeting. He said the Central Office started this project after Ted Offutt, retired police chief and current director of the Marion County Day Report Center, talked to the board in January about the idea of placing Prevention Resource Officers (PROs) in the schools.

Neptune said he and Ray Frazier, who deals with safety in the school system, began to make phone calls to reach out to the communities. They were looking for police officers to come to the schools for approximately 30 minutes in the morning and 30 minutes in the afternoon.

“We don’t want to set a designated time for the police officers to show up,” Neptune said. “We want those police officers there to do walk-throughs, to walk around the school building, and then go on about their business.”

He initially thought Marion County Schools would need to supplement the income of the police officers for that extra hour of their day, which the superintendent and board would have had to address. But communities across the county have signed on to be a part of “30 on 30” at no cost to the board, Neptune said.

“Every mayor that I contacted didn’t hesitate,” Frazier added. “I think it’s important to develop these relationships and develop a familiarity with everybody. It’s been well received, and I think it’s going to be a very positive thing.”

 

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