Covington SRO making an impact

By Sam Wildow -

COVINGTON — Covington’s School Resource Officer Tim Cline recently submitted a report to the Covington Council about his work so far in the school, revealing that he is providing a presence and a service to the community that goes beyond security.

Cline recently attended the A.L.I.C.E. Advanced Instructor Course held at the University of Toledo, where he “learned the prescribed methods for school emergency response plans during an Active Killer Event,” according to his report.

Cline explained that, from the A.L.I.C.E. training, he has been able to instruct students and staff about other actions that can be taken during an event where there is an active shooter on the premises that adds more than usual lockdown drill to which many people have been accustomed.

Cline stated that what he brought away from the A.L.I.C.E. training and took to the schools is about “giving you the option to do anything in your power to protect yourself.”

Cline explained that the principles for active shooter situations include: Alert, Lockdown, Inform, Counter, and Evacuate. He noted that these principles and actions behind them give “the potential victims the choice to do what they feel is the best decision to give them the best chance of survival.”

“That’s definitely the most important thing we’re doing this year,” Cline said in an interview on Tuesday.

In addition to providing Covington schools with A.L.I.C.E. training, Cline has also given presentations on bullying (6th grade health, one period), the legal aspects of drugs and alcohol (7th grade health, two periods), and internet safety (7th and 8th grade computer class, four periods).

Cline’s presence also provides safety in the form of having a professional police officer on school premises throughout each day. In Cline’s report, he notes that does a walk-through of each building, making sure that exterior doors are locked, observing the general “mood” of each building, and making contact with each building’s secretary or administrator.

Cline explained that on the first day of school, there was a possible drug offense that occurred during lunch in the high school commons. He noted that “due to the poor quality of camera footage … I was unable to see anything that showed any suspicious activity.”

Cline has since spent his time during the lunch periods in the commons. He noted that he has not observed any illegal or suspicious activity since then.

The overall reception of Cline’s presence in the schools appears to be optimistic.

“It seems very positive amongst all the students,” Cline said. Cline stated that the elementary students “absolutely love it when they see a uniformed (officer)” around and the same went for the middle school students. The high school students have become comfortable with his presence as well.

“I want to give everybody … the comfort in knowing that there is an armed officer on school (premises),” Cline said. “If I can make a difference in one person’s life and maybe get them on the right track … it’s definitely a success for me in my mind.”

By Sam Wildow

Reach reporter Sam Wildow at (937) 451-3336 or on Twitter @TheDailyCall

Reach reporter Sam Wildow at (937) 451-3336 or on Twitter @TheDailyCall