Sheriff Steve Sheldon and Madison Schools Superintendent Lee Kaple announced that Deputy Bryce Ernsberger will be the first School Resource Officer (SRO) assigned to a county school. Deputy Ernsberger was recommended by Mr. Kaple and the Superintendents from Lucas and Crestview Schools after an intensive interview process. The recommendation was considered and Sheriff Sheldon, who was present during the interviews, agreed with the recommendation.
Deputy Ernsberger is a graduate of the NCSTATE Police Academy and has done a great job carrying out his patrol duties, having the highest activity in the uniform division.
“This will be a huge responsibility with a student population of over 3,000 students. I support Bryce in his new endeavor. Crestview and Lucas Superintendents were impressed with the process and are in hopes of adding an SRO for their school districts in 2019,” Sheldon commented.
Deputy Ernsberger will begin as an SRO on Thursday.
An agreement was recently signed between the Madison Board of Education and the Richland County Commissioners for the deputy to perform the duties of an SRO, full time for the school district. Madison Schools have agreed to pay 100% of the deputy’s salary while assigned to the school and the commissioners will pay for the deputy’s wages when he is not assigned during the summer months when he will return to patrol.
Superintendent Kaple states that the Madison Board of Education tasked him when he came back to the district in September to work with the Sheriff’s Office to get the SRO in place.
Sheldon and Kaple agree that Ernsberger will play three vital roles:
1) The SRO will provide an increased safe and secure environment.
2) Joint cooperative effort between Madison Schools and the Sheriff's Office to build relationships between deputies, school staff, students and parents.
3) The SRO will provide direct communication with school officials to address student behavior, security threats and law enforcement matters.