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U-46 approves pact for school resource officers


By Seth Hancock
  The Board of Education in School District U-46 approved the contracts to provide school resource officers (SRO) at all of the districts middle and high schools, at its meeting on Monday, Oct. 1. The vote was 6-0, board member John Devereux was absent.
  The contracts were with four municipalities to provide 14 total full-time police officers: Seven from Elgin, three from Streamwood and two each from Bartlett and South Elgin. The contracts were approved by their respective village boards and or city council before coming to the school board.
  The total cost will increase by 3.4 percent to $1 million including a $34,068 (3.7 percent) increase in base salary from $921,950 to $956,018. The budget on overtime for event security did not increase, remaining at $89,500.
  The annual salary for SROs in Elgin is $70,417 ($492,919 total for seven), for Streamwood is $69,921 ($209,763 total for three), for Bartlett is $66,066 ($132,132 total for two) and for South Elgin is $60,602 ($121,204 total for two). The hourly overtime rate is $69 for Elgin, $67.48 for Bartlett, $63.50 for South Elgin and $50.43 for Streamwood.
  At the Sept. 24 meeting when the contracts were presented to the school board, U-46 CEO Tony Sanders said the contracts were “pretty much the same contracts as before” with the exception of language changes regarding police body cameras in Elgin’s contract.
  John Heiderscheidt, director of safety and culture, wrote in a memo to the board regarding that change: “After legal review by the City and School District, language was included regarding Elgin Police officers body worn cameras while on-duty working in schools. If a police body worn camera is activated by the officer per department procedure, within IL Law, such recordings are student records and will be handled pursuant to the Illinois School Student Records Act and the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act.”
  Heiderscheidt’s memo stated that there were no language changes to the Bartlett and South Elgin contracts and “minor word changes but nothing of substance” to Streamwood’s.
  Elgin’s contract included further “minor” language changes according to Heiderscheidt as well as additional language that “the chief of police makes the final decision on selection of the Elgin police officer assigned as an SRO” and “the reporting officer only reports on the specific school designated.”

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