School Resource Officers (SROs) are sworn law enforcement officers who are responsible for providing security and crime prevention services in the school environment. In 2001, the Columbia Police Department placed SROs into the [then] two Columbia high schools, David H. Hickman High School and Rock Bridge High School. In 2013, an additional SRO was placed in the new Muriel Battle High School. One SRO was also assigned to Columbia Public Schools’ Middle and Junior High Schools, and CORE (Center of Responsive Education) School. The SROs complete 40 hours of basic training prior to beginning as an SRO. Their services are paid for by both CPD, as well as Columbia Public Schools.
For many years, several teens from around Columbia had the opportunity to participate in the Youth Academy. The Youth Academy was facilitated by SROs and featured presentations from CPD specialty units such as the SWAT Team, K-9 Unit, Domestic Violence Unit (DOVE), and many more! The youth got to participate in activities focused on law enforcement procedures. The week-long academy was a great way for any aspiring officer to get a head start in the field. At this time, the Youth Academy has been dissolved due to short staffing levels. We hope to be able to provide the Academy again in the coming years.
Junior Leadership Training
On September 14, 2015, CPD held a Junior Leadership Training which focused on youth leadership development and courage. This training included traffic stop scenarios and decision making round table discussion. The training was facilitated by Sgt. Horrell and Sgt. Bolinger with Training and Recruiting and the School Resource Officers, Officer Edwards and Officer Bowden.