The Scottsboro City School Board is kicking off  its  “Safer Schools=Safe Students initiative.

The initiative comes in an attempt to raise funds for additional School Resource Officers.
The Scottsboro Board of Education currently has two school resource officers. One is currently housed in Scottsboro High School and one covers Scottsboro Junior High, Collins Intermediate School, Caldwell Elementary School and Nelson Elementary School.
The Board of Education would like to place two officers inside the high school and one officer in each of the remaining schools, for a total of 6 School Resource Officers. However, funding is not available at this time.
Alabama Governor Kay Ivey announced earlier this year that the Sentry Program would allow certain school administrators to undergo training and store firearms on campus, in case of an emergency. The following are included in the Sentry Program Guidelines:
•It will only be used in schools with no school resource officers.
•Administrators approved as sentries will store weapons in a safe and could only use them in response to an armed intruder.
•To be a sentry, an administrator will need approval of the local superintendent, local school board and county sheriff.
•A sentry must have a concealed carry permit and be approved as a reserve deputy sheriff.
•A sentry will have to pass training, drug screenings, a mental health evaluation and stress test.
•A sentry’s duties will include “the use of lethal force to defend the students, faculty, staff and visitors of his or her school from the threat of imminent bodily harm or death by an armed intruder.”
•During a shooting incident, a sentry will wear a distinctively marked bullet-proof vest known to law enforcement.
However, Scottsboro Board of Education Superintendent Dr. Jay Reyes feels the Sentry program would not be the best option for Scottsboro City Schools. One scenario previously given was in the event of an armed intruder inside of a school. The example given was that if the armed intruder made it inside, the designated Administrator would have to alert authorities, leave the area that is under a threat, put on an identification vest, unlock a safe to retrieve a stored firearm, and then he or she would be authorized to return to the area with the firearm where the threat is occurring. Under these circumstances many lives could be lost during the time that the Administrator is going through the proper steps set out by the Sentry program.
Reyes hopes that with the help of the community the Safer Schools initiative proposed will allow for the additional School Resource Officers.
According to Chief of Police Ralph Dawe, one School Resource Officer costs approximately $50,000 per year.
In November  the Scottsboro City Council agreed to support the Memorandum of Agreement for the  School Resource Officer funding program. This program empowers the citizens and businesses of Scottsboro to voluntarily agree to a monthly contribution on their Scottsboro Water, Sewer & Gas (WSG) bill which would be placed in a fund to hire additional SRO’s for local schools. The SBOE has produced, and will distribute, printed forms with pertinent information regarding the SRO voluntary contribution program.
This form is  included in this week’s edition of The Clarion Newspaper.
Individuals and businesses will be given the option of making a voluntary monthly contribution in the amount of $3.00, $5.00, $10.00, $25.00, $50.00, or $100.00 on their Scottsboro WSG bill. Any individual or business, which does not receive services from Scottsboro WSG, will be provided an option of setting up a monthly bank draft such that the funds are drafted by the SBOE with the funds being then forwarded to the City.  The City will place these funds into the aforementioned SRO fund. Individuals and businesses may also present one-time donations to SBOE and City Hall.

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