MCSO SRO Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What is an MCSO School Resource Officer (SRO)?
A: An SRO is a POST certified sworn Deputy Sheriff who is assigned to a CMCSS school.
Q: Are SROs employed by Clarksville-Montgomery County School System?
A: No, SROs are Sheriff’s Deputies employed by the Sheriff of Montgomery County, TN.
Q: Which schools have SROs?
A: SROs are assigned to each school in the Clarksville-Montgomery County School District.
Q: Who supervises the SROs?
A: SROs are supervised by SRO Sergeants and an SRO Lieutenant.
Q: How to I speak with the SRO at my school?
A: SROs have a daily assignment at a school(s). You can contact the front office of the school to be transferred to the SROs office. SROs are also reachable via school system email, which can be provided by the school.
Q: If I have a concern about an SRO, who should I contact?
A: You can contact an SRO Sergeant or SRO Lieutenant. Their contact information is located on the Sheriff’s Office webpage under the School Resource Officer Division.
Q: What are the primary job duties of the SRO?
A: An SRO’s primary duty is to maintain the safety and security of the students, staff, and school campus in a law enforcement capacity. They also provide guidance to staff, students, parents, and the community related to crime prevention, crisis management, and other law enforcement related matters.
Q: What are other general duties of the SRO?
A: SROs are a law enforcement resource for school administration and also there to serve as a positive role model to students and staff. They can assist with general problem solving, awareness, education, and emergency management. SRO duties are expansive and involve developing relationships with students and the community to promote positive social behavior and safety in the school environment.
Q: Are SROs responsible for enforcing the CMCSS Code of Conduct?
A: No, SROs deal with enforcement of Tennessee and other applicable law. The CMCSS Code of Conduct is managed by the school system’s designees and should not be enforced by SROs. However, SROs, in building positive relationships, may provide conversation or informal counseling in regards to student violations of the Code of Conduct.
Q: How much training do SROs receive?
A: SROs are POST certified officers. They receive 40 hours of Police In-Service each year. SROs are then required to attend a 40-hour SRO Basic course within one year of assignment in an SRO position. SROs also attend a 24-hour SRO Advanced course, usually within 1-2 years of attending the SRO Basic course. SROs are required to complete an additional 16 hours of SRO specific training each year that has been approved by POST standards. Throughout the year, SRO leadership conducts 16-24 hours of additional training, in-house, on CMCSS staff development days.
Q: What kind of training to MCSO SROs receive?
A: SROs receive a variety of training related to their duties in a school environment. Some topics include mental health awareness, autism awareness, de-escalation techniques, drugs, criminal investigations, gang activity, crisis response, and emergency management. SROs are also involved in trainings and discussions regarding interaction with students, rapport building, and the development of positive relationships with students, faculty, and the community.
Q: Can SROs detain and arrest students?
A: Yes, SROs are POST certified officers, have law enforcement authority, and can detain and arrest for suspected violations of law. However, detaining and arrest of students must be a result of a criminal investigation and meet standards established by law.
Q: Can an SRO interview and interrogate a student?
A: Yes, during the course of a criminal investigation, an SRO may conduct an interview or interrogation of a student. Applicable state and federal laws for investigative detention and Miranda do apply, however, as a student does not relinquish their rights just because they are in a school environment.
Q: Is an SRO required to notify a parent or guardian before interviewing or interrogating a student?
A: In most cases the answer is NO, if it is determined that the student is able to understand their rights. In some cases, due to age or other known factors of a student, it may be determined that a student may not understand their rights and therefore a parent or guardian would be notified prior to questioning. In either case, school administration is acting as loco parentis, and as such, can stand in with any student being questioned by an SRO or other law enforcement official.
Q: Can an SRO search a student’s property?
A: An SRO may conduct a search of a student’s property when meeting the standards set forth by law. Administrative searches are those conducted by school administration under standards set by school policy and may not be conducted by an SRO or other law enforcement officer.