*This story originally appeared in The Budget’s March 28, 2018, Local Edition.
By Beverly Keller
Details are still being worked out but Garaway has added the position of school resource officer, and the position has been filled thanks to an agreement with the Village of Sugarcreek and the Sugarcreek Police Department.
Officer Dave Strubel is already a familiar face to the students at Garaway Middle and High School after being placed there when Sugarcreek Council approved the measure to pay half his wages for the coming school year in wake of recent safety issues across the country.
The cost to Garaway Schools is $9,831.80 per calendar year through December 31, 2018.
“This is something that will benefit our students and the school,” explained Garaway Superintendent Dr. James Millet. “Having someone here on staff is important to our school district as a whole.”
He noted that while there are many layers to Garaway’s security plans already in place, it is imperative to keep plans up to date and students as safe as possible at all times.
Strubel will also make trips to Miller Avenue Elementary in Sugarcreek.
Dr. Millet noted that talks are starting about the possibility of sending Strubel to Dundee, Ragersville and Baltic or partnering with the Tuscarawas County Sheriff’s Department to get an officer in the other buildings periodically.
“Our safety plans for the district were prepared with help of a representative from the Department of Homeland Security,” Dr. Millet shared. “They were also approved by the State of Ohio and the Department of Homeland Security. Our doors are locked and secured. We have tools and training for our teachers.”
In the future, more safety upgrades will be done at buildings that include the ability to hold guests in one area after they have been buzzed in that does not give them access to students.