School Resource Officer programs have gained in popularity over the past 40 years, with their origin traced as far back as the 1950s and ’60s. I first wrote about and advocated for an SRO program in Frederick County schools in the early ’80s. While with the sheriff’s office in the early ’90s, I made an unsuccessful attempt to secure funding for an SRO program, and later, I was with the Department of Justice COPS Office where we funded SRO positions and provided training to SROs and school administrators nationwide.
I have been a proponent of and written in support of SROs for over four decades now, but realize it is time to take an objective look at these programs to see if they are actually accomplishing what we want. Particularly during the evolution of the community policing philosophy, the role of the SRO was to build relationships with students, teachers,