Today February 15, is National School Resource Officer (SRO) and School Safety Officer (SSO) appreciation day. Wenatchee School District has two SROs from the Wenatchee Police Department and two non-commissioned SSOs employed by the district at Wenatchee High School. While their jobs differ, their goals are the same as all staff, administrators, teachers, and volunteers within the district - to create a thriving environment where all individuals flourish, are seen and valued, feel safe, and know they belong.
Safety and our promise to create opportunity and success for our students are intrinsically linked. Studies have shown that learning is much more difficult if we don’t feel safe. When we don’t feel safe, we can’t focus on learning. Feeling unsafe is so impactful that it can outweigh every other obstacle to learning. Our safety staff works daily to ensure our campuses are safe places so our students can experience equitable access to high-quality academic, extracurricular, and real-world learning.
Our SROs and SSOs are key to establishing a culture of diversity, equity, and inclusion within our school community. By building relationships between students, families, schools, and the community, they enhance student well-being and success. They are specially trained in bias-free, trauma-informed crisis intervention and de-escalation, cultural competency, restorative justice practices, adolescent development, and youth mental health issues. They look for every opportunity to build relationships, even amid crises or interventions. These advanced skills, coupled with their dedication and commitment to our students well being, is exceptional, and we greatly appreciate them.