MURFREESBORO, Tenn. (WTVF) — The Rutherford County Sheriff's Office and Rutherford County Schools are among the areas increasing security at their schools this school year.
In 1993, student resource officers were added at the county's five high schools and now SROs serve all 50 schools in the county.
“A welcoming environment is essential for a student to be successful. That welcoming environment has to have order, safety and structure," said Schools Director Dr. James Sullivan said. "We value our partnership with the Rutherford County Sheriff’s Office, and we have multiple safe schools initiatives in place — including automatic door locks and limited access systems — and continue to implement methods to fine-tune our safety procedures.”
SRO Captain Brad Harrison said that safety plans continue to build and evolve through the years, with the same goal of protecting the children and school staff.
These resource officers build relationships with students beginning in pre-K and kindergarten through graduation and allow students to feel safe to share safety concerns.
“If kids see something, they say something,” Harrison said, explaining the sharing of information alerts SROs who investigate threats as another way to protect school safety. "Most threats and issues are discovered and proactively addressed before they become an imminent threat to a school."