Laurens Co. Officials Discuss Adding Police Substation In School - WSPA.com

Laurens Co. Officials Discuss Adding Police Substation In Schools

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Laurens County School District 55 is trying to find new ways to better protect students. Laurens County School District 55 is trying to find new ways to better protect students.
LAURENS COUNTY, S.C. -

Every school wants a full-time resource officer, the problem is not all districts can pay for one.

That's why officials in Laurens County are looking at how they can do more with less.

"It is now become a reality that we have to accept," said Laurens County Sheriff Ricky Chastain.

For several weeks now, Chastain has been discussing security option with school officials from District 55.

He says they have come up with a unique plan -- instead of trying to add officers, why not have deputies move in.

The sheriff's Office would install substations inside at least two of the schools which is a low-cost option to providing around-the-clock security detail.

"It is beneficial for the officers. Just because I am the one stationed here, our guys on the road pop in every day," said Barton Holmes, a SRO at Hickory Tavern Middle School.

If a school were to become a designated substation, officers would no longer drop by for a quick 'hello.'

They would conduct some of their daily work from the campus, like taking calls and filling out reports.

The hope is that if deputies were constantly going in and out of a school, their presence would discourage any would-be attackers.

"You pray and hope there is never a dangerous situation where an officer is needed," says Russell Scott, principal of Hickory Tavern Middle.

School officials say the costs would be minimal and it is certainly better than nothing.

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