There will be a new face walking the halls of Rock Island High School.
Officer Thomas Danhof will be the school's new SRO (school resource officer). The last time the district had an SRO was in 2019. Due to police staffing shortages, the Rock Island Police Department was no longer able to provide an SRO.
When the opportunity arose that the RIPD could provide an SRO the district started working on the process to bring back an SRO to the high school.
"We knew we wanted to bring one back because we see the importance of having one in our schools. On top of keeping our students safe, an SRO bridges the gap between the community and the school," said District Safety Manager Charles Butler.
From there the district and the police department work diligently to find the next SRO. The district was able to collaborate with the police department on the selection process. Once they found the perfect candidate the district and police department worked for several months on coming up with a carefully vetted and extensive contract.
Officer Danhof will be the primary SRO and Officer Mendoza will serve as a backup if Officer Danhof is ever out. Both have to go through specific SRO training.
The school resource officer will have several responsibilities, but some include:
- Promote a positive, mutually respective relationship and enhance communications between police officers, students, staff, and parents at the School District.
- Be available to students, staff, parents, and school community organizations as a resource.
- Interact with students as a positive role model.
Office Danhof has been an officer with the State of Illinois since 2012 and has been with the RIPD since 2020.
"I applied to be the SRO for the RIMSD to better connect with the community. I am looking forward to building a strong and trusting relationship with students and staff. My goal for this position is to help the outstanding staff of RIMSD to create an even better and safer learning experience for students," said Officer Danhof.
Officer Danhof will work closely with the District's Safety Manager. The contract cost is $118,525 for the 2023-2024 school year. He will start in January 2024.
Welcome Officer Danhof!
From left to right: Officer Mendoza, Interim Superintendent Alan Boucher, Officer Danhof and Rock Island Police Chief Richard Landi.