CINDERELLA There will be a police presence in Mingo County's two high schools for the 2019-20 school term.
Superintendent of Schools Don Spence made the official announcement at the regular Board of Education meeting last week. Spence said he had been working with the Mingo County Commission and Mingo County Sheriff's Department about having two resource officers. Starting in August, there will be a deputy at Mingo Central and Tug Valley high schools.
"This was a true team effort," Spence said. "I really appreciate the sheriff's department, the county commission and my staff here at the central office for working together on this. This is exciting for people in the county to work together for something so beneficial to our students. Hopefully this program is a success. This takes a lot of work to make something like this happen."
"I want to make sure to give a huge thank you to the Mingo County Sheriff's Department for their help in making this happen for us," said BOE President Sabrina Grace. "Great things truly do happen when everyone works together for our students. To Mr. Spence, our commissioners and our sheriff's department - I truly thank each one of you for your dedication and effort. Our sheriff's department has a great history in working with our schools."
Sheriff James Smith and Chief Field Deputy Joe Smith said they are pleased the department can help make this happen.
"We've worked with the County Commission and Don Spence," Sheriff Smith said. "It was a matter of having the officers available. The problem in the past is the funding. Hopefully we will get a grant next year."
All three sources will work together to pay the salaries of the two deputies that will be stationed at the high schools. The sheriff said the way it works out, the department will gain an officer and no officers will be taken off of the street.
"When school is in session, we deal with calls almost daily at the high schools," Chief Smith said. "Having an officer there will be preventative. It's good we can work with Superintendent Spence along with the County Commission to make this possible. This will be beneficial to everyone."
The first day of school for the students is Aug. 14. Teachers and other school employees will begin work Aug. 7.