Farmville police work to put officers in town schools

FARMVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) – Farmville Police officers are working to reorganize the way your kids are protected in school.

Farmville Police say they’re well involved in the community, yet these officers aren’t the ones assigned to protect kids at Farmville schools. Now, officers and town officials are working to change that.

Right now, the Pitt County Sheriff’s Office is responsible for placing school resource officers at Farmville schools. But Farmville Police Chief Donnie Greene says it would make more sense to put his officers in those schools.

“There’s that issue where something goes on at a Farmville school and I get called by Farmville parents saying hey what’s going on at the middle school, what’s going on at the high school, and me say I don’t know,” said Chief Greene.

Chief Greene says this change would require him to hire two additional officers, but the town is willing to foot the bill.

The Farmville Board of Commissioners approved a resolution requesting the police department take over school resource officers. It now heads to the school board for approval, but not everyone’s sold on the idea.

Greenville officers are in the city’s schools, so Chief Greene is working with them to figure out how to best implement the change. Yet, the sheriff’s office seems concerned about issues of jurisdiction in Farmville schools.

A sheriff’s office spokesperson told WNCT having Farmville officers serve as SROs will be problematic since many kids who go to the town’s schools aren’t from there.

Pitt County Schools spokesperson Brock Letchworth released the following statement in response to the proposal: “The school system has not yet received a resolution from the Farmville Board of Commissioners supporting the placement of Farmville Police officers as school resource officers in the Farmville schools. Once the school system’s leadership has had an opportunity to evaluate the pros and cons of such a proposal, we can discuss it.”

Both Pitt County Schools and the sheriff’s office declined interviews on this topic.

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