July 26, 2018 – Washington – The executive director of the National Association of School Resource Officers (NASRO) today told the Federal Commission on School Safety that NASRO has created recommended national standards and best practices for school resource officer (SRO) programs. NASRO executive director Mo Canady said Commission members are the first to receive a copy of the document.
“As the world’s leader in school-based policing, NASRO has regularly spoken to the critical need for national standards for SRO programs,” Canady said during testimony at today’s Commission hearing. “We ask you, The Federal Commission on School Safety, to support these recommended standards.”
NASRO’s document, Standards and Best Practices for School Resource Officer Programs, covers four main areas:
- Administrative standards, including an outline of the definition and purpose of an SRO.
- The careful selection of law enforcement officers for SRO positions.
- Specialized SRO training, including adolescent mental health, threat assessment, and active shooter response.
- Interagency collaboration between school districts and law enforcement agencies.
The document is available on NASRO’s website at the following address: https://nasro.org/cms/wp-content/uploads/2013/11/NASRO-Standards-and-Best-Practices.pdf
Canady defined an SRO as “a sworn, certified law enforcement officer assigned to a community-based policing program and actively working in a collaborative effort with the school district.” He said that when communities do not adhere to that definition, “the SRO program’s effectiveness will, at best, be greatly hindered, and, at worst, be significantly detrimental to the school, the law enforcement agency, and the community.”
“I cannot emphasize enough,” Canady added, “how critical it is for officers to be carefully selected and specially trained to function in the school environment. This is always a factor in the success or failure of any SRO program.”
NASRO second vice president Rudy Perez – representing the Los Angeles School Police Association – and NASRO past president Don Bridges – representing the Baltimore County Police Department – also testified before the commission today.
NASRO is a nonprofit organization for school-based law enforcement officers, school administrators, and school security and safety professionals working as partners to protect students, school faculty and staff, and the schools they attend. NASRO is headquartered in Hoover, Alabama. It was established in 1991. For more information, visit www.nasro.org.
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