The HPD School Resource Officer Program began with the intent to improve community relationships by participating with students in a non-confrontational setting and working with faculty and parents in the educational process. This is done by establishing rapport with the students and being available for them when they have questions or concerns. This is accomplished by establishing programs in concert with the school administration to address safety and security issues, educational programs, and by acting as a counselor/mediator for the parents as well as the students. Currently Officer Eric Bowker is assigned full time, 40 hours/week, to SRO duties.
The SRO was provided an office at Howland High School but will also visit and respond to the other schools in the district. During the summer, (school vacation time), Officer Bowker is assigned to routine patrol duties. Some activities of the SRO include: Addressing crime and disorder problems on campus by taking enforcement action when necessary however, they will conduct investigations as needed, but will focus on prevention; Developing a Peer Mediation Program to teach students alternative ways to deal with their differences/disputes without resorting to violence; Developing or expanding juvenile justice programs such as a Juvenile Diversion Program for first time offenders; Facilitating collaborative problem solving with students, parents, teachers, faculty, and staff to address school safety issues; Attend extra-curricular activities held on campus when possible; Teaching law-related educational courses to students and/or faculty; Addressing truancy as a school problem as well as how it relates to crime in the community. Officer Bowker can be reached at the S.R.O. Office during school hours at 330.856.8200 or at HPD 330.856.5555
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