Lightford works to implement school resource officer training

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PROPER TRAINING IS essential for School Resource Officers. Illinois Senate Assistant Majority Leader Kimberly Lightford (left) is working to ensure the state provides the necessary training.

As the national call for more school resource officers grows, Illinois Senate Assistant Majority Leader Kimberly A. Lightford (D-Maywood) is working to ensure Illinois provides proper training for the all-in-one law enforcement, counselor and community liaison position.

Senate Bill 2925, which was approved by the Senate recently, requires the Law Enforcement Training Standards Board to develop or approve a certified training program for school resource officers by Jan. 1, 2020.

“We want all school resource officers to have the proper training to be a supplement to our children’s education,” Lightford said. “They have tough jobs, and the only way to make them easier is setting training standards that prepare these officers for the situations they may face in a school.”

The training will be developed with consultation from organizations with expertise in the areas of youth and adolescent development, educational administration, child abuse and exploitation prevention, youth mental health treatment, and juvenile advocacy.

The legislation also allows law enforcement agencies to request a waiver of the training for any officers who may already be qualified as an SRO.

The legislation will now head to the House for consideration.

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