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School Resource Officer Program

The School Resource Officer Program (SRO) is a successful partnership between the Baltimore County Police Department and Baltimore County Public Schools (BCPS). BCPS is comprised of 175 schools, programs and centers, and serves over 115,000 students.

The SRO program began with two officers in 1997 and has expanded to 83 officers as of 2018 that serve the BCPS community, which is the third largest school system in Maryland and the 25th largest in the United States. Currently the SRO program consists of 37 SROs assigned to the 24 high schools, 27 assigned to the 27 middle schools, three assigned to the three alternative schools, 10 assigned to cover all the elementary schools located within each of the 10 precincts, and six designated as floaters.

Requirements

SROs are required to:

  • Dress in full uniform
  • Drive marked police vehicles
  • Be in constant radio contact with precinct personnel

Specialized Training

The SRO Program is a nationally accepted program involving the placement of a law enforcement officer within the educational environment. SROs receive specialized training given by the National Association of School Resource Officers (NASRO).

Also with the passing of the Maryland Safe to Learn Act of 2018, the Maryland Center for School Safety (MCSS) developed an additional 40-hour training that new SROs are mandated to attend in addition to the NASRO training.  

The basic TRIAD concept, which signifies the philosophy of the school resource officer program, dictates that officers are teachers, counselors and law enforcers.

SROs as Teachers

As teachers, officers are ad-hoc members of the staff and are responsible for the following:

  • Provide current trend and law-related education to students
  • High school SROs act as guest speakers when needed to assist in teaching current trend and law-related classes
  • Middle school SROs teach the Drug Abuse Resistance Education (DARE) program and Gang Resistance Education And Training (GREAT)
  • Provide law enforcement and community service information to students, parents and staff
  • Work closely with their school-based counselors to ensure each student receives proper guidance

SROs as Law Mentors

As mentors, SROs work to establish a rapport with students by:

  • Showing an interest in their academic and extracurricular activities
  • Discussing their interests
  • Listening to their concerns 
  • Being a positive role model 
  • Recruiting candidates for a future career in law enforcement

SROs as Law Enforcers

As law enforcers, it is an officer's duty to:

  • Investigate crimes
  • Make arrests
  • Patrol communities near their schools

SROs do not handle school-based disciplinary issues; that is the exclusive responsibility of the school-based administrator.

Model SRO Agency

The Baltimore County Police Department has been recognized nationally by NASRO as a model SRO agency. Additionally, NASRO recognized Baltimore County Police Officer Danielle Moore with the 2020 NASRO Floyd Ledbetter National School Resource Officer of the Year award.

Contact Information

For additional information, email Sergeant Watkins at awatkins@bcps.org or call 443-809-6487.

 
Revised August 26, 2020         

 

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