Louisville Gets Federal Grant For Armed Officer Protection At More JCPS Schools

Louisville has received a federal grant to help pay for more school resource officers in Jefferson County Public Schools—and city officials say for the first time an elementary school will receive the added protection.

The school resource officer job gained heightened awareness after the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in Newtown, Conn.

Whether these police officers who are trained to be in schools actually help prevent school shootings has been debated. Click here to see a congressional report where it mentions “the research that is available draws conflicting conclusions about whether SRO programs are effective at reducing school violence. Also, the research does not address whether SRO programs deter school shootings, one of the key reasons for renewed congressional interest in these programs.”

Regardless, Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer says the city police department received a three-year grant through the U.S. Department of Justice to add five more school resource officers.

“We had an opportunity to get more school resource officers to make sure they [schools] are either safe places from outsiders, but also helping the kids in terms of making good choices as well,” he says.

School officials say these officers are also seen as mentors and are meant to help guide students to make better decisions. 

JCPS already has several resource officers working in more than 20 schools. City officials say LMPD wants to fund at least one officer at a JCPS elementary school for the first time. The department and JCPS are still working out which schools will be served through the grant funding.

(Image via Shutterstock)

Devin Katayama

Devin Katayama hosts middays for WFPL and reports on education and other Louisville issues.

@DevinWFPL

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