Date

2-23-2021

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts

Department

Human Services

First Advisor

Diane Nelson

Second Advisor

Timothy Toyen

Abstract

School resource officers (SROs) face the arduous task of balancing expectations from both police and school administrations. This paper will serve to provide an overarching view of the circumstances surrounding SROs and the job they are tasked to complete. Administrative stakeholders will be identified, unique considerations for the duality of administrations within the SRO position will be considered, and administrative strategies to mitigate the potential for conflict will be explained. A formulated action plan will analyze the impact of ethical principles within work as an SRO through the lens of fellow officers, the school district community, students, parents of students, and others involved in the criminal justice system. Sustaining measures that will support long-term ethical accountability will be explored, and the details of the action plan will be compared to the tenets of the Concordia Saint Paul Stewardship Principles. Concerns regarding the actions of SROs and the potential for litigation will be explored. Existing case law will be applied to probable situations that SROs are likely to encounter and strategies to reduce the risk for negative legal outcomes of workplace interactions will be offered. Lastly, resolutions will be offered that, if implemented, may help bridge some of the common disconnects between SROs and the school administrators and students they serve.

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