The new Student Resource Officer for the North Royalton School District was announced by North Royalton Police Chief Keith Tarase. The new SRO has completed his initial SRO training with the Ohio School Resource Officers Association in October. He will start the new position on February 13, 2023.
“I am excited to name Patrolman Colin Gregory as the new School Resource Officer (SRO) assigned to the North Royalton Elementary School,” stated North Royalton Police Chief Keith Tarase. “Patrolman Gregory is a young, energetic, and hard-working officer that has shown exceptional professionalism when dealing with students and staff in his short time as an officer. He will serve this agency and the North Royalton City Schools well.”
Gregory was hired by the North Royalton Police Department in February 2021, where he has been serving as a patrol officer. The Brunswick resident attended the North Royalton Middle School, then graduated from St. Ignatius High School. He received a Bachelor’s degree from Miami University and then put himself through the Police Academy at Cuyahoga Community College.
Last month, the North Royalton City Council approved legislation to add a third SRO to the complement of the North Royalton Police Department. Last December, Council approved the addition of a part-time SRO to the complement.
SROs are police officers who work in the district, along with school administrators, faculty and security staff members in an effort to ensure that schools are safe places for students. According to that legislation, it states that “The School Resource Officer Program (SRO Program) is designed to clarify roles and expectations between the participating entities to foster an efficient and cohesive program that will build a positive relationship between police officers, school staff and students, promote a safe and positive learning environment and decrease the number of students referred to the juvenile justice system.” It goes on to say that “the mission of the SRO Program is to promote school safety by building a positive school climate in which everyone feels safe and students are supported to.”
The full-time SROs will have complete SRO duties during the school year. In the summer and after safety town is done, they will be utilized with other police duties. Tarase said that the SROs are assigned to the Detective Bureau and also assist patrol. Currently, Officer Alexandra Jezior is the full-time SRO at the High School and Officer Jon Karl serves the Middle School. Gregory will be stationed at the Elementary school.
“We are thankful for the great partnership we have with the police department and the city,” stated North Royalton School Superintendent, Mike Laub. “This will put a school resource officer in every building and provide an additional layer of support to our students, families and staff.” Mayor Larry Antoskieiwcz noted, “I think with the way things are going today, we understand the concerns the schools have. When the Superintendent approached with the idea, we were on board to work it out and think we came up with a great way to make that happen.”
By GLORIA PLEVA KACIK