AVON, Ind. Feb 14 2020 Teachers, staff and students at a fast-growing school district are getting a brand new police department to help keep them safe.
The new school police for the Avon Community School Corporation will be responsible for five campuses, including the high school. It’s a plan that’s been in the works for months. Right now, there are more than 3,000 students who walk the halls of Avon High School, so safety is priority.
Chase Lyday is currently the chief and only officer who makes up the Avon School Police Department. He started his new position Monday and anticipates hiring at least four school resource officers.
Lyday is looking for the cream of the crop, since their job will go far beyond just patrolling the school campuses. Chase wants officers who can connect with young people, educators and even parents.
“Our goal is to finish a job description everyone is comfortable with and to finish compensation packages so that we can open up that listing,” the chief said.
Central Indiana school districts took second looks at safety following the shooting at Noblesville West Middle School, where a teacher and student survived gunfire.
Right now, there are full-time officers from surrounding law enforcement agencies who work off-duty employment in the school district. Although their presence is evident, it’s not consistent when it comes to interacting on a day-to-day basis with students they have the potential to develop friendships with over a four-year period during their high school years.
Avon Police Chief Sean Stoops is supporting the start-up, saying it will do more than just address potential security issues that happen every day in every school district.
“Not only do we have security issues, but also issues with mentorship as well as education that needs to go along with that,” Stoops said.
He believes if resource officers are also able to serve as mentors that students will look to them for advice, too.