Citing Budget Concerns, 2 School Districts Reconfiguring Security Forces

Chester County in South Carolina and the Maize Unified School District in Kansas are trying to discontinue their current security forces.

Two school districts, one in Kansas and the other in South Carolina, are in the process of dissolving their security forces to save money, but neither thinks they’re sacrificing safety.

In South Carolina, Chester County has told Sheriff Alex Underwood they will no longer need his school resources officers in their schools. In Kansas, the Maize Unified School District told parents on April 21 that they are planning on discontinuing the school district’s police force.

But both districts have plans to maintain the safety of their schools. Chester County will hire private security guards for their campuses. County officials say that will ensure there is a guard at every school and help them get the most for the money available. Previously there were only four school resource officers for the entire county, according to live5news.com.

In Kansas the Maize City Police will take over security at the schools. The city plans to add people to its police force and designate them as school resource officers. Maize Police Chief Matt Jensby says he, the city and the school district have been working on the plan for weeks, according to kwch.com. The proposal still has to be approved by the school board and, if passed, would go into effect July 1.

School budget cuts are becoming commonplace in Kansas, where income tax has been abolished and state revenue has plummeted. Discontinuing its police force will safe Maize schools about $80,000 next year, when they face a $351,000 budget cut.

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