(Jackson Township, Ohio) The Jackson Local School District is adding additional police officers for the 2018-2019 school year.
Earlier this week township trustees gave the district the green light to hire three part-time police officers, taking the district’s police staff to five. Officials note a sixth candidate is still being considered. The two current police officers on the district’s staff have worked at Jackson High School and Jackson Middle School.
District officials have noted in recent statements that placing an officer in all six of Jackson’s schools is another way district leaders are continuing to enhance security. Per recommendations from the Safety and Security Task Force chaired by Stark County Sheriff George T. Maier, the district also plans to establish a network that will issue warnings to parents and students during an emergency, and partner with the Sandy Hook Promise Foundation among other elements to improve security.
The focus of the Sandy Hook Promise Foundation is to prevent gun-related deaths because of crime, suicide or accidental discharge. Several area school districts have taken steps to participate in the organization’s Say Something reporting system, which is anonymous.
Officials have continued to note the importance of being proactive when it comes to ensuring the safety of students and staff. Jackson is also one of several school districts participating in the Stark County Educational Service Center’s 1.49-mill levy that will go before voters in a special election on August 7th. The levy would generate funds that would be distributed to participating school districts and used for additional security measures and mental health services.
While Jackson has continued to pursue increased safety and security measures, the issue has seen added attention following the death of a student in February. The child took a .22 caliber rifle to Jackson Middle School where, according to investigators, he planned to shoot other students and staff. Instead, the student shot himself and died the next day.