Assemblymember Monica Wallace Announces $75,000 State Grant to Establish School Resource Officer Pilot Program in Depew School District

Depew, NY – Today, on the first day of classes for Depew School District students, Assemblymember Monica P. Wallace (D-Lancaster) was joined by Depew Superintendent Jeffrey Rabey, Depew Mayor Jesse Nikonowicz, Depew Chief of Police Stanley Carwile, and Depew Police Detective Scott Hossfeld, who was selected as Depew’s school resource officer (SRO) last week at a Village of Depew Board meeting, to announce state funding for Depew’s recently established SRO program. Wallace’s grant of $75,000 will allow the Depew School District to begin an SRO program as a one-year pilot, saving costs from being incurred in the current school budget and allowing the district and village to evaluate the program’s effectiveness following the 2018-2019 school year. There is an agreement in place between the school district and village to continue the SRO program for four subsequent school years should finances allow.

“Working with Superintendent Rabey, I’m proud to announce that I have secured state funding to establish a school resource officer program for Depew,” said Assemblymember Wallace. “The presence of an SRO not only facilitates a safer environment for students and educators, it builds a lasting bond between our community and those who protect it. I have no doubt that Detective Hossfeld will provide safety within the district and serve as a mentor, role model, and confidant for Depew students.”

"The Depew School-Community is very fortunate to have the support of Assemblymember Wallace,” said Superintendent Rabey. “As a result of her advocacy for our students, she was able to secure additional funding for the District, which we then identified to fund a School Resource Officer pilot program for the 2018-2019 school year. The program will go a long way at strengthening our relationship with the Village of Depew Police Department, increasing our level of a safe and secure environment and providing law enforcement, education and counseling to our District students."

“This is a long time coming,” said Depew Chief of Police Carwile. “We have tried on several occasions to start an SRO program and have fallen short mostly due to funding. Thanks to Assemblymember Monica Wallace for the grant provided to the Depew School District to fund an SRO pilot program.  The SRO program will go a long way to bring the Police Department and the Depew School District closer together.  It will create a safer environment for the staff and students, provide a mentor to the students, and create a conduit between the School District and the Police Department.”

Det. Hossfeld, an 18-year veteran of the Depew Police Department, has served as a liaison between the police department and the school district for the past eight years. Last year, with the support of the school district, Hossfeld attended school resource officer training. As a school resource officer, he plans to interact daily with students and staff to further build a sense of safety and trust within the school district. Hossfeld will also retain an office within the school where he can accessed if needed.

As per the agreement made between the district and the village, the $75,000 grant will assist the school district in pay Hossfeld’s salary, while the Village of Depew will provide benefits to the detective.

Academic studies on school resource officer programs show that effective SROs contribute to the prevention of school property damage, reduction of 911 calls placed by the district, decreased likelihood that a student will get a criminal record by working directly with troubled youth, and an increased likelihood that students will get proper assistance from social services and health care systems should they be needed.