VOLUSIA COUNTY, Fla. — The Volusia County School District has signed an agreement with the sheriff’s office to run its safety and security department.
Volusia Public Schools officials say they believe the change will lead to quicker responses to emergencies, better communication, and easier access to records.
The district and sheriff’s office signed the one-year agreement just this week.
Under the agreement, the Volusia School District’s Safety and Security Chief is now gone. Instead, a Volusia County Sheriff’s Office Captain and Lieutenant will run the district’s safety and security.
School Board Chair Ruben Colon says he feels the change will allow the district to focus on education while leaving policing to the deputies.
“We are going to be able to not only have the best resources of the sheriff’s office, but we are going to have better communication,” Colon said.
Colon says teachers, parents, and students won’t notice any major changes under the agreement.
Some children’s advocates have raised concerns about the district embedding itself with law enforcement, and the possibility that it could lead to more arrests or citations of students.
However, Colon says the impact will be felt more on an administrative level than in the day-to-day operations at schools.
“For me at Volusia County Schools, we are focused on educating students,” Colon said. “I am glad to see we are getting out of the business of law enforcement and we are going to rely on those who are in law enforcement and have that specialty in order to keep our students safe in school.”
The Captain will work with the Superintendent and will be supervised by the sheriff.
The sheriff’s office says it already has a captain to recommend for the role. The superintendent must still approve that selection.
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