Junction City accepts $5,000 from Boyle Schools for outside officer

Published 6:53 pm Monday, July 15, 2019

The Boyle County School District is planning to provide an officer outside Junction City Elementary School at the beginning and end of school days this year.

Junction City Police Chief Russell Preston told city council members Thursday that Chris Holderman, assistant superintendent, contacted him earlier in the week to offer $5,000 so the city could have an officer stationed outside the school for approximately 30-45 minutes in the mornings and afternoons.

He said the school district is currently attempting to provide the same thing for the City of Perryville, and he believes it is all part of the Safe Schools program through the Kentucky Department of Education.

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Holderman was not able to be reached for comment.

Russell said Holderman is in the process of getting the item before the Boyle County Board of Education for review and hopefully passage. “So it will take a little bit to get the whole process done,” he said.

The Boyle County Sheriff’s Office provides school resource officers who patrol inside of the school, he said.

“This will primarily be for the safety of students outside of the school, when parents are dropping them off in the mornings, and when they’re picking them up in the afternoons after students are released,” he said. “It’s important that an officer be there to ensure the safety of the kids outside, and it’s nice that Boyle is doing what it can to help us with this. They are taking the steps to ensure this happens.”

The council approved allowing Boyle to provide the $5,000 unanimously.

As far as the longtime traffic issues common at Junction City Elementary School, which is mostly troublesome in the afternoons when students are released, Preston said Friday he feels like he may have a solution.

“There’s is a situation when they come up on North Lucas, in the afternoons mainly,” Preston said. The school is located on School Street, which is about three blocks off of Shelby Street, Junction City’s main drag.

Preston said cars are lined up from the school all the way down to Shelby Street in the afternoons. In the past, residents have appeared before the council complaining of being blocked in by the line of cars, while some say there is such a tight squeeze in some areas due to the narrow road, they feared it would cause accidents.

“I’m trying to work something out with the school, and divert some of the school traffic to the other side so that we’ll have two lanes of traffic,” he said.