CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (WCIA) — Officials with the Champaign Police Department and Unit 4 Schools announced Thursday they are temporarily suspending the School Resource Officer Program.
In a news release, they said the decision was made because of police staffing shortages. The main change is that there will not be SROs assigned to school buildings. However, police will continue to maintain a presence throughout the school year, according to officials.
“The well-being and safety of our students and schools will always be a priority for Champaign Police, and though we have suspended our School Resource Officer Program due to staffing resources, each officer still has the ability to monitor, visit and check in on our schools to help foster safe and positive learning environments,” said Champaign Police Chief Anthony Cobb. He continued to say their relationship with the school district is not ended and they will continue to give resources to the best of their ability.
“As we strive to provide a safe and nurturing learning environment for our students and staff, we will continue to work closely with our partners at CPD. This is an opportunity for us to proactively approach the security of our students and staff from a social-emotional and equity lens,” said Unit 4 Superintendent Dr. Shelia Boozer. “We plan to strengthen student supports through restorative proactive, therapeutic crisis intervention (TCI) training, and introducing Student Support Advocates (SSAs) as part of our staffing.”