Commentator Liz Ryan claims that "the current system of law enforcement in schools doesn't work and needs an overhaul" ("More cops in schools isn't the solution," March 1). I do not concur.
While compelled to make spending reductions in other parts of the county budget, one area where I authorized an increase was in the police department budget to increase the number of school resource officers in country middle schools.
Eleven of the 19 middle schools currently have SROs, and legislation I recommended this year to the General Assembly would allow slot machine gambling proceeds to be used to increase that number as well as enhance mental health initiatives.
Every student is entitled to a safe and secure learning environment, and SROs help ensure that. They also provide a role model for students and offer an important communications link between students, school staff and the police department.
John R. Leopold, Pasadena
The writer is a former Anne Arundel County executive.Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun