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School Police, Crossing Guards Could Fall Victim to City Budget Cuts

Potential cutbacks could mean the schools would have to pay for school resource officers and crossing guards.

Proposed budget cuts of almost $3 million being considered by Concord could mean the loss of public school resource officers and crossing guards, among other city services,  according to a city document.

City staff will present the proposed budget changes and a 10-year financial plan at  one on June 5 and another on June 26. Read the city description of the proposed cuts below, then tell us in the comments what you think.

Concord Patch will follow the budget process and bring you updates in the coming week. Share any questions you have and we'll try to get them answered.

From the Proposed Operating Budget document:

Item 1: Ask the Mt. Diablo School District and the Clayton Valley Charter School to pay for the current five School Resource Officer positions.

The cost for each position with salary and benefits is approximately $180,000. Without funding from the Mt. Diablo School District and Clayton Valley Charter School, high schools and middle schools would have no School Resource Officer (SRO) assigned. Investigations and calls for service that occur on campus would draw upon patrol and detective resources.

The secondary SRO function of mentoring, intervention and coaching of at-risk middle and high school students would be served in a significantly reduced capacity by creating collateral assignments for patrol officers to support this purpose.

Additionally, the on-site disciplinary role of the SRO’s would have to be carried out by the school staff. If the positions are not funded by the schools, 5 vacant police officer positions would be frozen as “unfilled.”  The officers currently assigned as SRO’s would return to patrol and other assignments. This proposal assures that the City preserves it patrol service levels.  

Item 6: Eliminate Crossing Guard Contract – Impact:  $90,000 

The city has been contracting for crossing guard services since the mid-1990s. The purpose of the school crossing guard services contract is to staff key locations in the City of Concord with crossing guards, providing for the safety of school children as they walk to school and cross busy intersections.

Since 2003, a private company has been managing the program. This company hires and trains part-time employees to provide crossing guard services to 12 strategic locations throughout the City of Concord. This recommendation eliminates the funding by the City of Concord for these services. Elimination of this contract for crossing guard services places the burden on the Mt. Diablo School District or parents to provide this service to the students.

californiabayarea June 01, 2012 at 06:09 PM
When I was in school the kids did the crossing guard duties. A local Police office and/or school attendant was in charge of the program and us kids were taught how to be a crossing guard. It teaches children responsibility, safety and above all the values needed in life. Until I moved to the Bay Area I had never seen adults who were paid to do this job in charge of such a thing.
Kari Hulac June 03, 2012 at 03:15 PM
Interesting point! Same for where I grew up. But that was a place that had K-6 in one school. So 6th graders were doing it. I know now that I'm a parent I probably wouldn't want a fifth-grader standing out in a busy crosswalk, from a size perspective, which can vary a lot from tiny to about 4'9--hard to see from an SUV, which weren't as common back in the day.

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