Police chief: two D.A.R.E. officers are not needed

Although the St. Charles Police Chief Dennis Corley refused to comment on the reason that the St. Charles school district will have two fewer police officers working with the district for the next three years, Mayor Patti York forwarded a copy of a memo that was given to members of the St. Charles City Council.

The memo explains the Chief’s reasoning for decreasing the number of officers. He says that since the district has reorganized, the school resource officer at Jefferson Middle School had moved to Lewis and Clark Career Center.  Also, the demands on the Drug Abuse Resistance Education officers had declined because all of the 5th grade students are now located at one school rather than at all of the elementary schools.

Corley also said that many area police departments are offering schools services fo a combined school resource officer and a D.A.R.E. officer. Under the new plan the school would reimburse the city for the pay of two police officers who would work as school resource officers. The police department would provide two police officers who would work as combined SRO and D.A.R.E. officers.

“This is a ‘win win’ situation for the district, the city and the Police Department,” Corley wrote in the memo. “The Police Department can still provide the D.A.R.E. services at the 5th and 7th grade levels, have sufficient discretionary time to devote to the law enforcement demands that arise on (sic) daily basis in our schools, and redirect two full time sworn personnel to providing law enforcement services to the community.”

City Councilman Jerry Reese, Ward 6, said he plans to bring up the change at the April 21 council meeting.

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