By KATHRYNE RUBRIGHT
Using a new website, local law enforcement officers can let schools know when children have had a traumatic experience at home.
Hancock County sheriff’s deputies and Findlay police officers can use www.hancockhandlewithcare.org to submit a brief report, which will be sent to Barb Bish at Findlay City Schools and to the Hancock County Educational Service Center.
Bish, the Findlay School District’s community relations coordinator, was involved in the development of the grant-funded website, which was discussed at Monday’s school board meeting.
Depending on where a child lives and attends school, Bish or an ESC employee will alert the appropriate principal about the student’s situation.
For example, Bish said, “a police officer shows up to a domestic call in the home. There are children in the home.”
The officer can fill out a form on the website immediately after leaving the home.
“He doesn’t have to bother coming back to call me, to talk to me, to tell me things,” Bish said. “Then I take the form, look up where that child is going to school, and I send that off to the principal.”
Then, “first thing the next morning, that (school) counselor’s with that kid,” Superintendent Ed Kurt said.
For those who aren’t in law enforcement, the website includes public information about child abuse, human trafficking and parental drug use.
Separately Monday, the school board approved a change in how Findlay police officers who work security at special events are paid.
This will now be a contracted service instead of being processed through the school district’s payroll.
The district will no longer have to pay taxes for Medicare and retirement on this money, Treasurer Mike Barnhart said after the meeting.
Findlay police officers provide security for sporting events or other occasions with crowds, when the district’s own security is unavailable or working other events. They are paid $30 per hour.
Separately, the board heard that International Night will be held at Wilson Vance Intermediate School on Feb. 20.