I am pleased to announce that for the first time, beginning October 28th, the Dracut Public Schools will be supported by a full time School Resource Officer (SRO). The Dracut Public Schools and the Dracut Police Department continue their positive working relationship, with the SRO being the latest manifestation of the strengthening relationship between town departments.
Officer James Quealy, a veteran member of the Dracut Police Department emerged from the intense and competitive interview process as the selected finalist. The committee, chaired by Deputy Chief of Police David Chartrand, included Detective Lieutenant Demetri Mellonakos, Dracut High School Principal, Richard Manley, and Superintendent of Schools Steven Stone. The Dracut School Committee and Board of Selectmen have approved the working agreement developed by the DPS and DPD. The agreement includes includes a shared obligation to fund the position as well as operating principles to guide the administration of the schools and the DPD.
A School Resource Officer is a vital position for both departments. For the schools it offers the presence of a public safety official, who will work directly with students, administration , and staff. This work will include participation of the district’s safety committee, and day to day support for the school community. For the police department, it offers an opportunity for a direct, visible presence with children and adolescents; allowing for the development of positive relationships.