Schools get back to business with safe start to year - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Schools get back to business with safe start to year

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August 6, 2004

Albany- Unless this was your first day at Albany High School, you know Cpl. Terron Hayes.

He's one of 11 Albany Police officers who work the school beat.

"Just trying to pass on some of my experience to them," Hayes said.

Dougherty County has resource officers in all four high schools, five middle schools and the alternative school. They go through special training during the summer to stay up to date about trends with drugs and gangs.

Administrators say that experience makes a big difference in a school environment. But the officers say one of the best ways to prevent problems is to know the students and what's on their minds.

"So that they'll know that we're not only here to protect and serve, but we're here to be a friend and partner with them."

There are other security measures too. Administrators use metal detecting wands in the mornings to check for weapons or anything that could be used as one. Security cameras give administrators a good view of the campus, and record on tape anything that happens.

And resource officers are making changes like having shrubbery cut that blocks the view through a window or is high enough for someone to hide behind.

"We just protect them and preserve and keep the peace as much as we can on the campuses," he said.

That safety starts by being one of the most well-known men on campus.

posted at 10:18 p.m. by brannon.stewart@walb.com