I read an article regarding a local, small town Selectman’s proposal to cut the school district's budget. The following is nothing against the particular town at all but more against the more common trend on what is actually happening nationwide in our school districts.
I get the desire (rather than need) to cut budgets. What I don’t in any way get is the decision to include the School Security/Resource Officer positions, and any security-related items in these cuts! Unfortunately, today, this is far too typical as its happening nationwide. Many times, while parents, who are taxpayers, support budget cuts, they rarely play a role in exactly what is cut once the decision is made to cut and, my guess is, that if they did, they would likely object to the decisions that result. In today’s environment, is security really the place to look for cuts? The answer is absolutely – as long as nothing happens and, if it does, there’s no finger-pointing about what wasn’t done to keep our kids secure.
Remember this, however:
I have schools nationwide tell me regularly that they don’t have “the budgets” to support security enhancements, whether they be technology, training, or anything else. My consistent and unqualified response is – “YES YOU DO!” The question is how you CHOOSE to spend your money. Are activities like prom’s, sports, club’s, activities, etc. worth the tradeoff of exposure to the risk of danger to our teachers and students? Based on the decisions that are being made, apparently it is and, that’s ok, as long as its understood that, if something bad happens that there the consequences will be accepted and owned by those who support these decisions.
Do you know that most schools that are doing away with security-related positions are just leaving the responsibilities completely empty? In other words, cut the positions and do nothing to replace the purpose that the position existed in the first place!
It’s shameful for anyone to knowingly support this. Again, just remember as long as nothing happens everything is fine but, if it does happen, look no further than the support for the cuts and the decisions on exactly what is being cut.