LEWISBURG, WV (WOAY) – As the new school year has officially begun for Greenbrier County, more security is coming to the elementary schools.
A trained and uniformed police officer will be joining the school’s security teams. Being funded through the Elementary and Secondary Emergency Relief Funding (ESSERF) for 2 years, the school hopes the new police presence will enhance the safety of everyone involved.
“We felt like our elementary schools were, for lack of a better word, vulnerable, to people who may want to bring harm to our students and employees, so, therefore, we looked at the resources we had remaining from the EESERF funding and we decided that the best use of those funds was to provide that layer of protection for our elementary schools, as well,” says Superintendent of Greenbrier County Schools, Jeff Bryant.
The officers started their new roles on August 29, the first day of school. They will have a consistent presence at every one of the elementary schools across the county.
As numerous elementary school shootings have left a resounding nationwide impact in recent years, everyone there already seems to feel just a little bit safer.
“I made visits this morning at our western end schools, tomorrow I’ll be going to our eastern end schools, and the first thing I saw when I got out of the car was a police officer at each of these schools standing out front of the school, interacting with children as they came to school and with their parents, and the reaction that was received from parents, they were overjoyed,” Bryant says.
Bryant feels this police presence at the elementary schools was well-received and hopes that it can be continued.
On November 8 citizens will vote on the renewal of the special school levy. If approved, it will be able to provide a continued police presence in the elementary schools for the next 5 to 7 years.