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Carter County schools will have an SRO in every school this year

John Thompson • Aug 10, 2018 at 10:08 PM

ELIZABETHTON — With the start of a new school year, the Carter County School System has already achieved one goal. This will be the first year that there will be a school resource officer assigned to each of the school system’s 15 schools.

“We have been working with the school board for several years to get the funding for this,” said school system director Kevin Ward. “It began in the early 2000s, when the school system got a safety grant, which we used to fund six SRO positions.

He said the Carter County Commission and the Carter County Sheriff’s Department has assisted the effort in recent years by funding positions.

Last year there were 14 school resource officers for 15 schools. No officer was assigned to Little Milligan Elementary School, but officers assigned to other schools would provide assistance to the school when needed.

County Commissioner Larry “Doc” Miller fought to get a school resource officer assigned to Little Milligan. He brought the matter up at school board meetings and commission meetings.

The school board designated $301,000 last year toward the SRO programs and voted to fund one more position for this year. Carter County Finance Director Brad Burke said the rest of the funding for the program, especially equipment and training costs, more than 50 percent of the total, comes from the sheriff’s department.

During the times when school is not in session, the school resource officers reinforce the sheriff’s department.

With the new school year ready to start today, the school resource officer held a training session at Hunter Elementary School on Friday. Lt. Mike Carlock leads the SROs.

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