Officer stationed at Dawson-Bryant

Published 12:50 am Sunday, August 23, 2015

COAL GROVE — When young people at Dawson-Bryant middle and high schools headed back to school last week, there was a new face in the halls.

Amanda Webb, officer with the Coal Grove Police Department, began her first day patrolling the halls and insuring the safety of the schools. An officer will now be in the schools all day during the school year.

The village of Coal Grove and the school district have formed a partnership to pay for having an officer, with the village paying for two days a week and the district paying for two.

Coal Grove Police Chief Eric Spurlock has advocated getting officers in the schools and believes that is a way to insure the safety of the school.

“I’ve been six years trying to get this done,” said Spurlock. “My No. 1 priority was to get drugs out of the schools. I want to make sure the kids are safe.”

Students now have the opportunity to go to an officer for help when they are dealing with problems at school.

“They can get to know her,” said Spurlock. “They can come to her and talk to her.”

School principals can radio the officer if they need assistance to deal with a situation at the school.

Spurlock said he has already heard about some young people who are excited about having an officer in the schools.

“We got a lot of good feedback (from teachers),” said Spurlock. “I know the school board…is for it.”

Serving as the police officer at Dawson-Bryant was something Webb looked forward to doing, said Spurlock.

“She is tickled to death,” said Spurlock. “She and I were both excited about it.”

When it comes to dealing with school violence, Spurlock believes that having an officer in the schools will have a positive impact.

“It’s going to help,” said Spurlock.

Although having an officer assigned to the school is currently based on a one-year trial period, Spurlock anticipates that officers will continue to be assigned there.

“Next year I think we will have officers in the schools,” said Spurlock. “It’s a win-win situation.”