Lincolnview and Crestview personnel gather at the Sheriff Department with officer Mike Biberstine (right) Sheriff Tom Riggenbach (center) and officer John Gabriel (left).
VAN WERT – Lincolnview Local Schools and Crestview Local Schools have teamed up with the Van Wert County Sheriff’s Office to equip themselves with a full-time School Resource Officer.
Starting Monday, April 9, 2018, officer Mike Biberstine will be at Lincolnview full time while officer John Gabriel will be at Crestview full time. Prior to that agreement, both schools had been sharing Biberstine for the past year and a half. Both Biberstine and Gabriel are trained in the D.A.R.E. program, which both schools utilize.
“I think it’s been a good thing for the schools, the communities, and the Sheriff’s Office – the relationship building piece that is involved and being able to do that is very valuable,” said Sheriff Tom Riggenbach. “We’re really exited [sic] that both school districts are giving us the opportunity to be there five days a week. We’re excited about moving forward and the opportunities that lay ahead.”
While safety and security is the top priority of the SRO officers, Riggenbach also said that a benefit of having officers in the school is the positive relationships they can build with teachers and students. The officers will also have duties such as patrolling the school campus area, making sure students are safe during lunch and recess, as well as attending different classroom curriculum based on what teachers may need.
“They are going to be a very active resource, just as it says, for the schools,” said Riggenbach. “I think we’re going to see a lot of good things happen because of this.”
Both Crestview and Lincolnview are paying for their individual officers which will cost between $40,000 to $50,000 for a full school year. While the officers are employed through the Sheriff’s Office, Crestview Superintendent Mike Estes said he will view the officer as part of the Crestview team.
“That’s how we’ll see officer Gabriel, as another staff member working with us in our mission to educate, protect, and serve our students,” said Estes.
During the non-school days, such as summer vacation, the officers will be assigned different duties such as SRO training, additional training, D.A.R.E. projects, and other needs of the department.
Biberstine said that he is excited to be with Lincolnview full time and that one of his main concerns in the past year was being at each school half the week, leaving the schools vulnerable the other half.
“I’m excited to have us in the school full time,” said Biberstine.
“I’m excited for the opportunity and really looking forward to do what I can to work with staff and keep the school as safe as possible,” added Gabriel of his new assignment at Crestview. “That’s one of my top priorities. My number one goal is to prevent anything from happening. I look forward to the opportunity and all the challenges that come with it.”
Lincolnview superintendent Jeff Snyder said the partnership will not only provide the comfort of safety but will allow both schools to continue to better their safety practices and said it’s nice to have experts on-site.
“I want to say thanks to the Sheriff’s Department and the Commissioners who gave us an opportunity to start part time and as it progressed, and [with] the world we live in today, it came to a point where we really needed to look at the future of how we’re going to provide safety.”
Because the Sheriff’s Department will be providing the deputies, they will need to hire more personnel. Riggenbach said the department has already taken steps to maintain the number of personnel required to best serve the county. He hopes to be back at “full capacity” by early June.
From Times Bulletin Media
Streetsboro D.A.R.E. Officer Jason Fogleman dropped in to visit Debbie D’Amico’s fifth-grade class at Henry Defer Intermediate School last week. Streetsboro Police Officer Jason Fogleman isn’t looking for awards and recognition. But they’ve found him. Fogleman,...
GALION — Warmer weather gives way to the graduation season for high school seniors. But it’s also a time for another type of graduation ceremony that focuses on younger students making a commitment to staying drug and alcohol free, and making good choices. Galion...
Thirty-one fourth graders at Freedom Elementary feeling accomplished during their D.A.R.E. graduation. Drug Abuse Resistance Education, or D.A.R.E., is an eleven-week program that fourth-grade students across the country participate in to gain knowledge about the...
Lisbon McKinley Elementary fifth-grade students recently completed an 11-week Drug Abuse Resistance Education (D.A.R.E.) program taught by Sergeant Shar Daub of the Lisbon Police Department. All students, who completed the program and all its requirements graduated on December 1.
On November 28, Paulding County D.A.R.E. program held its graduation for 5th graders of Antwerp Elementary. Graduation is a time for students to think back on what they have learned in D.A.R.E. and time to reward the kids for completing the 12-week program. At the end...
A.J. Siegel, left, 10, of Fort Loramie, shakes the hand of Shelby County Sheriff’s Chief Jim Frye during the Drug Abuse Resistance Education (D.A.R.E.) 2017 fall session graduation ceremony. The ceremony was held at Fort Loramie Elementary Wednesday, Dec. 13.
Noting the success of the D.A.R.E. and Safety Town programs, Duncan said part of Norwalk being a safe city starts with young children.
Miracle girl Zumyah Thorpe, recovering from a car accident, adds national speaker to her list of achievements. Zumayah was asked to speak at the 28th International D.A.R.E. Conference held in New Orleans August 4 to 6, 2015…
D.A.R.E. cited in press release for support of proposed legislation which would prohibit the sale of cough medicines containing the ingredient dextromethorphan to minors. FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Tuesday, July 28, 2015 CONTACTS: Rep. Bill Johnson - BEN KEELER (330)...