Police tackle bullying and child exploitation
POLICE are now based at two schools in a town, in a bid to deal promptly with issues such as child exploitation online. Officers from the Stevenage neighbourhood team have set up offices at The Nobel School and Marriotts School. Pc Hal Palmer, neighbourho
POLICE are now based at two schools in a town, in a bid to deal promptly with issues such as child exploitation online.
Officers from the Stevenage neighbourhood team have set up offices at The Nobel School and Marriotts School.
Pc Hal Palmer, neighbourhood officer for Chells, has been working with the schools for about two years to get the offices operational.
So far, he has helped reintegrate excluded pupils, assisted teachers with issues of bullying, dealt with parking issues, and developed a programme to help Year 7 pupils settle in.
Future projects include developing a radio link with the schools, holding dedicated surgeries, increasing foot and cycle patrols from the schools, dealing with issues of illegally parked vehicles and those causing an obstruction, and giving presentations to students on personal safety.
He said: "Having an office in the schools has given me a fantastic opportunity to help pupils, integrate with staff and deal promptly with a wide range of issues.
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"I am able to work from the heart of Chells and Manor and respond to incidents even faster than normal."
The youth crime reduction police community support officer, Rebecca Lancaster, will be undertaking other duties which include delivery of Child Exploitation Online Protection packages and awareness sessions, and high visibility patrols of the schools.
Alastair Craig, headteacher at The Nobel, said: "It presents a strong disincentive to anti-social behaviour when the police officers on patrol know pupils' faces and names, and may well have met their parents."
Patrick Marshall, headteacher at Marriotts, said: "We have worked with Pc Palmer for the last two years and have found the experience to be central to the education of students.