Saratoga County to Start School Resource Officer Program

Saratoga County officials have joined with local school districts to enhance safety by establishing a school resource officer program. 

Under the plan, a deputy would be assigned to a district on a full-time basis. Those deputies will be placed after graduating from a summer training program. "It's a 40 hour course that's taught by the state," Sheriff Michael Zurlo said. "They go over how to interact with kids in schools, administrators, what to look for on social media."

Zurlo says he was contacted by school leaders and parents asking for this type of program following recent incidents of school violence. The county will share the costs for the deputies with each district. Each school district will be responsible for 75% of the costs including salaries, benefits and equipment.

As of now it's for the 2018-19 school year, but Zurlo says he hopes to be able to extend the contract. The program is expected to have strong support when its approval will be voted on at next month's Board of Supervisors meeting.

There are seven participating school districts: Ballston Spa, Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake, Mechanicville, Schuylerville, Shenendehowa, Stillwater and South Glens Falls.

Photo: Getty Images

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