School Resource Officer Program

We are excited to share the return of the School Resource Officer program to Ashland Schools in Fall 2024.  The program will place a trained School Resource Officer from the Ashland Police Department at Ashland High School.  The Officer will serve primarily at Ashland High and Middle Schools and will also support other sites. The program is made available through the generosity of the Ashland Police Department and the City of Ashland.


Ashland High School hosted an SRO for more than 20 years generously funded by the City of Ashland.  In 2015, the SRO program was discontinued due to budget constraints. In the 2022 school year, Ashland Police Department engaged Police2Peace to gather information from high school students about their thoughts, feelings, and experiences with law enforcement with the intent of developing strategies for positive and effective engagement between students and law enforcement. 

Police2Peace conducted a series of micro community listening sessions held in conjunction with Ashland High School students for the purpose of developing an open and honest dialogue that will challenge the current practices and actions of police agencies that negatively impact the community, foster solutions to issues raised during the conversation, and positively impact the relationship between the community and police agencies.

Key recommendations were identified from the conversations with students:

  • Greater engagement between Ashland PD officers and high school students outside of school activities.

  • Conveying messaging directed at high school students from the Ashland PD about what the PD does.

  • Creating outlets where students can have a voice about local policing.

The Peace2 Police Collective Conversations report began a serious conversation among AHS students about the need to rebuild the SRO program. 

Law enforcement presence on school campuses is a topic that generates strong responses.  Over the 2023-2024 school year, AHS students invested time to learn more about the role of the School Resource Officer program and to engage with each other about what the return of the program might mean.  Engagement with students of minoritized groups who may have experienced disproportionate negative interactions with law enforcement was prioritized. Students also organized several events on campus, including some epic corn hole tournaments, where students and officers could interact and build positive relationships. 

In April of 2024, the students presented their findings to the Ashland School Board and their recommendation for the return of the SRO program.  The District shared proposed inter-agency agreements developed jointly with the Ashland Police Department to assure appropriate training for SROs, ongoing engagement with students of minoritized groups, and an annual Board accountability review of the program.  Students expressed support of the program to help develop positive relationships with law enforcement and to increase campus safety.  A major safety concern identified by students is the availability and use of illegal substances in the greater community and the need to keep the school campus safe and drug-free. 

AHS administration noted that law enforcement currently provides support calls to AHS between one and six times a week and that having a consistent trained SRO familiar with the school, the staff, and the students would have a positive impact. The School Board, the District and APD welcome the return of an SRO program that is well supported through training, engagement, and accountability.

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