By Linda Dillman
Another school resource officer will soon walk the hallways at Groveport Madison High School following completion of an agreement between the district and the Madison Township Trustees.
During a Dec. 28 special meeting, the trustees approved the contract for the remainder of the 2018-19 school year The Groveport Madison Board of Education approved it on Jan. 9. Madison Township Police Chief Gary York said he anticipates the agreement going into effect in February.
It will be the second school resource officer in the district as the Groveport Police have already been providing the first officer at the high school. The contract for the Madison Township Police school resource officer is similar to the one the district has with the Groveport Police.
“The contract is a 69/31 split with the majority of the officer’s salary and benefits covered by the board,” said York. “The remainder is covered by the township since the officer is available for patrol when the district is on break.”
The total yearly cost—including salary and benefits—is $116,455 with the township covering approximately $36,101 and the district picking up $80,354.
York said the position was posted in-house following a previous trustees’ meeting and Officer Keith Mallory, a 14-year plus law enforcement veteran of the township department, was selected to fill the newly-created position.
Mallory previously served as a detective and is currently a patrol officer. In order to serve as a certified school resource officer, he is required to attend 40 hours of additional training.
“He has a good track record and has previously worked closely with the schools,” said York, “so it seemed natural for him to step into that role.
York said Mallory is not replacing the current Groveport Police school resource officer. He stated the township position is a supplement to the district’s safety staff.
“It’s an additional measure taken for the security of the children,” said York. “The two SROs will work in conjunction with each other. I think this will really help improve the overall school community.”
York added that the Madison Township school resource officer will be available to go to other schools in the district as needed.
The trustees approved:
•The purchase of two police cruisers and four in-car cameras. The vehicles are 2019 Ford Police Interceptor Utility vehicles at a total cost of $38,363 each. The agreement for the four cameras is not to exceed $18,265.
•Non-union full and part-time base pay rates for 2019 at 2018 rates for the administrator, administrative specialist, public works superintendent, police and fire chiefs, police commanders, administrative assistances and fire department office manager, which are all city taxable.