Spirit Pump to benefit new River Road ISD liaison officer

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AMARILLO, Texas (KAMR/KCIT) — The River Road ISD School Board approved the addition of a third liaison officer which will be placed at the middle school, which means there will be one there, one at the high school and one going between Rolling Hills Elementary and Early Childhood Academy.

“Teachers, staff, and parents are going to feel a little bit of relief knowing that there’s going to be somebody that’s housed over there all the time,” said Dean Birkes, River Road High School Principal.

Birkes said it also helps in other aspects.

“We like our SRO’s to build relationships with our kids so that they learn at a younger age that it’s ok to go up and talk to law enforcement and how to interact with them, and I think having more SRO’s on the campus will build more of that relationship,” said Birkes.

This addition was helped in large part by an initiative form Toot’n Totum called Spirit Pumps, where logos of schools all across the Texas Panhandle and in parts of Kansas and Oklahoma are placed on specific gas pumps.

Five cents from every gallon pumped goes to helping that particular school’s security.

“Seeing the pictures on social media our wildcat on a pump, it’s thrilling,” said Birkes.

The liaison’s responsibilities include checking the security of the doors and driving around to see if there are any suspicious vehicles in the area.

Birkes also said it will serve the students not only now but in the future.

“Kids see them and feel comfortable with having law enforcement there and then they start building those relationships, joking with the kids and talking to the kids,” said Birkes.

The initiative runs through April 30, 2020.

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