New Security at Hillsborough County Elementary Schools

When classes resume Aug. 19 in Hillsborough County, Foster Elementary will have a new face patrolling the halls; Community School Officer Rob Jones. For the first time, every elementary school in Hillsborough will have an assigned armed officer.

“I’ll start by making sure all the doors are secure,” Jones said. “A teacher was killed at Sandy Hook securing a door. If it had been locked that wouldn’t have happened.”

Since the tragic Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in December 2012, more districts have focused on elementary school security. Before that, only high and middle schools had armed officers. Every officer will be assigned a few schools, meaning officers won’t be at each school at all times.

“It doesn’t worry me that I won’t be here all the time,” Jones said. “One of the things I want to establish is be unsystematic and not predictable. That way you never know where I’m going to be I may show up at a different time or I may come to school leave and then come back. You never know.”

Jones is a Community School Officer. There are 22 in Hillsborough County Schools. The Sheriff’s Office and Tampa Police also have law enforcement at certain schools.

If you don’t live in Hillsborough County, 8 on Your Side is making a list of other districts’ security policies.

Pinellas – School Resource Officers, Certified Agents, or School Police at high schools and middle schools – No changes this upcoming school year

Pasco – School Resource Officers in Middle and High Schools – no changes this upcoming school year

Polk – School Resource Officers in Middle and High Schools. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others and keep the conversation on topic and civil. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s