School Resource Officers are Essential


Students gather at the entrance to school with the SRO

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When the Job is Done Right, there is no Doubt

If anyone has a question about the value and the purpose of School Resource Officers, then they should meet Officer Lincoln Kieffer at Mountain View High School in Fairfax County, Virginia.  The purpose of this publication is to demonstrate the benefits of having a SRO in the school building .  We want to show multiple perspectives on this view point.  As students and teachers, we believe that a good SRO facilitates difficult dialogue and brings greater understanding of the relationship between police and the community.

At most high schools there are students who haven’t had the best relationship with the law. For example, people may be prejudiced just because of the way they look or people may have a personal experience that shapes the way they see all police. In Montgomery County, Md. the prejudice against police was so strong after the summer of George Floyd and the Black Lives Matter movement that the S.R.O. program was removed from schools.  Reasons cited for this decision included the perceived trauma that seeing a police officer with a gun would cause.  At Mountain View we have come to know that the opposite is true.  When the job is done right the SRO becomes essential for the safety of students.

What is a School Resource Officer?

A good school resource officer is not a disciplinarian however they have a positive effect as a member of the school community. Many young people come to highschool with negative or even traumatic views and experiences with police. The presence of a school resource officer allows both students and police to understand each other. When the SRO looks like the students that has an effect of relatability.  A good SRO listens to students first and lets them know he hears them by giving them the resources to think for themselves.  A good SRO has the skills to know the school well for its security without overreacting to the students in their ups and downs. 

 Students are the hope for a better future and a better sense of justice in the community.  Young people are the product of the current society; they also see the confusion and the racism that affects the views of authority. When young people feel understood they can inform the larger community about the potential solutions to social problems.  A good SRO helps young people feel understood, as they bring new ways of understanding to the school community.

When students feel the caring attention of an adult with authority they learn to respect the relationships of authority and see themselves as valued .  This sense of value and self respect has a direct effect on the respect of others. Some students feel that police officers see young people as guilty and that a police presence is bad for the community.  It feels like a power struggle guided by prejudice and racial profiling.  A good SRO understands this struggle as they help to break stereotypes.


This SRO pin designed by Officer Lincoln’s daughter. An SRO is a mentor who leads by example and serves the school community with protection, education and justice.

 Perspectives on our SRO:

“He is a good person and we are safe because we know him. He knows safety does not necessarily come with a gun but with trust. He is a good guy and he’s friendly.  If any student has past trouble with police they will find a better understanding and a trusting relationship with a good SRO.”Student

Our SRO L. Kieffer answers a student question after class.

“We appreciate that he is trained for emergencies but what really makes us safe every day is the relationship of trust we have with him and other security staff.”  –Teacher

Students practice journalism skills with our SRO

” A School Resource Officer is successful when they create a safe environment. Too many students come from an environmet that is unsafe.  A Good SRO helps create a safe sanctuary at school which in turn allows students to choose school as a pathway to progress and success in life.  To those who say we should not be in schools, I say come observe what we do instead of making a judgement from a distance.  I can tell you from my perspective that it is very rewarding when you are ALL IN on the job.”  – SRO Kieffer


A Good SRO is willing to lead by example


A Good SRO knows the value of teamwork.  MTV Principal with the school security team.


A Good SRO knows that people skills matter.  Here Officer Kieffer introduces students to his successor Officer Wrobel.


Here are some questions addressed and sources studied by our Investigative Journalism team.

What jurisdictions canceled the SRO program?

What reasons do people give for the pros and cons of having an SRO?

What were the results of canceled SRO programs?

What statistics can we find about the benefits of SROs?

Is there any bad press on SROs?


This article goes over the decision that was made in Alexandria County to remove 800,000 dollars worth of funding towards the local police department as a means in funding for teens mental health and wellness. Alexandria county public schools are now in a rush to find a means of protection for students coming back to school after a shorter summer schedule.


YES Police belong in schools because

No police do not belong because

I believe there is a place for police in our schools, though I know reforms are needed in order to best support our students, educators, and community members.

An SRO is essential when the job is done right.

A good SRO is a valuable human resource and bridge to the larger community.

Budget on police is out of line when schools do not have adequate mental health staff.

(nurse, counselors, psychologist, social worker)

Montgomery county student quoted as saying a police officer with a gun in school would cause trauma.

What do you think?  The Answer is a clear YES for us.                                                                                                                                                                            This person believes that the presence of an SRO officer is criminalizing children and that they shouldnt worry about having a gun pointed at them in school.

There have been very few social scientific studies about SROs, but the studies that have been conducted so far do not indicate that the presence of SROs creates a “school to prison pipeline” in which children are saddled with criminal records for behaviors that previously would only have resulted in minor in-school discipline.