In a joint press conference today, BH-BL Superintendent Patrick McGrath, Scotia-Glenville School Superintendent Swartz, Town Supervisor Chris Koetzle, and the Glenville Police Department announced their continued efforts to support the community-to-school partnerships by entering into a School Resource Officer program at both BH-BL and Scotia Glenville.
This program provides BH-BL with a full-time Glenville Police Officer who will be a certified, trained School Resource Officer. The Glenville PD SRO will work collaboratively with the district’s current Saratoga County Sheriff SRO Zach Cicardi. Together they will assist district administrators and building principals in their continued efforts to foster safe and secure learning environments, develop positive relationships with youth, provide valuable resources to school staff members, offer mentoring and guidance, help students and families obtain assistance and resources they may need, and lead school-related programs and assemblies, such as the D.A.R.E program.
Throughout the years, BH-BL has invested in several safety upgrades beginning with the hiring of retired New York State Trooper Phil Poitier as the District’s Director of Safety and Security. Under the guidance of Poitier, BH-BL made several notable safety and security upgrades including a secure vestibule in each school building, security cameras, additional security monitors, and building access control systems. Participating in a School Resource Officer program adds another layer to the district’s existing safety measures.
“School Resource Officers are such a valuable asset to the school environment,” says McGrath. “In addition to the high-quality protection they provide to our schools, they also help to develop positive connections between students and the local community and they provide invaluable assistance to families dealing with a wide variety of circumstances.”
Growing the district’s SRO program is a budget-neutral addition for BH-BL. The funding comes from a security monitor vacancy, savings associated with shifting the D.A.R.E program into the SRO program, and through the retirement of Director of Security Phil Poitier. Both School Resource Officers will continue to implement the security framework, developed by Poitier, that transformed both the physical and procedural safety practices followed by the district.
“We look forward to working with the Glenville Police Department through the School Resource Officer program,” adds McGrath. “This partnership brings the district and towns closer together and benefits the entire BH-BL community.”