DOUGLAS COUNTY, Colo. - Inspired to bolster school security by the December shooting inside Connecticut's Sandy Hook Elementary School, deputies in Douglas County are voluntarily doing their paperwork in parking lots outside their district's 40-plus elementary schools. The result, they say, is more security without additional resources.
"Instead of pulling under a bridge or to a random parking lot to do their reports, they just find the local school nearest them and do it there," said Liz Fagan, Superintendent for Douglas County Schools. "We love that."
As an added incentive, the school district invites Douglas County Sheriff's deputies into their schools for free lunch. The district picks up the $2.75 tab.
There's also an added convenience for the deputies as they type up their reports.
"The school district has opened up their Wi-Fi," said Lieutenant Brian Murphy with the Douglas County Sheriff's Office. "Now we have access so we can upload and download our reports."
This innovative plan is getting good marks from parents.
"As they're trying to figure out the long-term, I think it's great they've come up with something in the short-term to kind of get us through and make us more comfortable," said pleased parent Elean Gersack.
The idea was first discussed on the Monday after the shooting in Newtown, when the school district met with Douglas County law enforcement.
"We learned something as a result of horrific tragedy," said Superintendent Fagan. "We have a commitment to focus on our school district and our kids to do what's right for them"
As for the students, they're learning cops are their friends.
"I love it," said Lieutenant Murphy. "As a parent, it makes sense."
Superintendent Fagan says this is just one step in the process of finding new ways to protect her school kids.