Sarasota County Schools advertising for chief of police and three sergeants for new district-based force

Full benefits packages offered

Photo courtesy Sarasota County Schools

The Sarasota County School District is seeking a chief of police and three sergeants to form the command staff of a new, school-based police department, the district has announced.

The people in those positions will work directly with the district’s executive director of public safety “to create a comprehensive, progressive police department for the district’s 53 schools, 43,000 students and 5,000 employees,” a news release explains.

“The hiring of the Police Chief is instrumental to building an effective school police force and public safety department,” noted Superintendent Todd Bowden in the release. “We are looking for just the right person to lead a team of men and women whose mission is to ensure the safety and well-being of our students on campus. We have a lot of work to do before the new school year, but I am confident the development of a school-based police force is the right choice for our school district,” he added in the release.

Under the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School Public Safety Act, which the Legislature approved this spring, each school in Florida is required to have a school security officer, the release explains.

Starting in August — when the 2018-19 school year opens —the district intends to employ police officers in each of its 23 elementary schools, with continued support from local law enforcement agencies in its secondary schools, the release points out. “The long-term goal is to employ school-based police officers in each district school, as well as detectives and other key personnel to support the security work of the district,” the release says.

“Candidates for chief of police and sergeant must possess successful leadership experience in the law enforcement profession, be person[s] of integrity, and exhibit high moral character in both their professional and personal lives,” the release continues. “This is a terrific opportunity for ambitious leaders to help create a unique, new police department from the ground up — one that will surely become a national model of excellence,” the release says.

This is the first page of the application for police chief in the school district. Image courtesy Sarasota County Schools

Each employee will receive a full benefits package, including 100% paid medical, dental and vision plans, life insurance and contributions into the Florida Retirement System, the release notes.

Candidates interested in applying for the positions may do so on the school district’s website. “Click to view the Chief of Police and Police Sergeant job descriptions and requirement,” the release adds.