Westport BOE votes to add 3 school resource officers

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WESTPORT -

The Westport Board of Education voted Tuesday night to add three school resource officers to the district.

District Superintendent Colleen Palmer says she has been pushing to have a team of school resource officers, or SROs, for some time. Several school districts in the area already have SROs, including in Weston, where Palmer was the former superintendent.

"I have seen them as an integral part of school safety and security," she says.

Some parents say they support the decision, especially in the wake of the high school shooting in Parkland, Florida. Some others said they were not comfortable with the idea of having officers armed with a gun in school.

Palmer says she'd like to see one resource officer at Staples High School full time and the other two shared among the middle and elementary schools. She initially pushed for five SROs but says it's all a matter of funding.

"The safety of students and faculty is foremost before any other goal, and this provides an additional layer of safety and security," she says.

The Board of Finance must now approve funding for the resource officers.

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