Lafayette schools could triple campus police force

Posted at 11:23 AM, May 02, 2018
and last updated 2018-05-02 12:23:05-04

The Lafayette Parish School board will vote Wednesday on its school security objectives, which could include almost tripling its force of school resource officers.

Today, there are 24 school resource officers employed with the system. That number could increase to 70 — with one stationed at each school and two at each high school — should the board approve the objectives at tonight’s meeting.

A recommendation on the agenda also would allow the superintendent to enter contracts with the Lafayette Parish Sheriff’s Office and Lafayette Police Department for officer services.

The system’s security expansion objectives also would prioritize the establishment of a system under one unified command structure.

"When considering best practices for SRO protection in schools, there are two tendencies that increase the risk of negative consequences during the analysis of risk and vulnerabilities. These are: Siloing and Disconnected management tiers," according to documents included with the agenda item.

The system’s secondary objectives for the expansion also could include, among other provisions, local municipal funding for half of the officers’ annual costs; investigative and K-9 services; and a requirement that the officers are state-certified, trained as school resource officers and "have marked police vehicles, weapons and body cameras."

The meeting begins at 5:30 p.m.