1. What is a Police School Liaison Officer?
A Police School Liaison Officer is a law enforcement officer assigned to the school. The purpose of having a PSLO at school is to assist the school in maintaining a safe environment for students, staff, and visitors. The PSLO interacts positively with students to gain confidence and trust. Students who choose illegal behaviors are held accountable by the PSLO through referrals to Social Service or citations. The PSLO actively supports the schools policy to discipline student behavior that threatens the health or safety of others.
2. Will I be notified before an officer interviews my child?
Law enforcement officers are not required by law to notify parents prior to interviewing a student. However, It is the policy of the Wisconsin Rapids Police Department and the Wisconsin Rapids Public School District to notify the parent/guardian as soon as it is practical.
3. Are other law enforcement officers allowed to interview students at school?
Yes. Wisconsin Rapids Public Schools and local law enforcement have established a partnership for the safety and well-being of all students. Interviews are conducted discreetly and only when necessary with the least amount of disruption to the student’s schedule.
4. Is information shared with the PSLO confidential?
The PSLO will notify school administrators concerning information that may jeopardize the health or safety of others within the school - Wis. Stats. Secs. 938.396 (1m) (a), (am), (ar), and (b). Physical and sexual abuse of a child (under 18) is reported to Social Services as mandated by law – Wis. Stats. 48.981 (2). All other information is kept confidential.
5. Can the PSLO search a student and their belongings at any time?
The PSLO, acting upon the request of a school administrator who has reasonable suspicion that a student has contraband, can conduct a warrantless search of a student, student’s belongings, and a vehicle within the student’s control, which is parked on school property. State v. Angelia D. B. 211 Wis.2d 140 (1997).
6. Does the PSLO act as an administrator in the sense that he/she disciplines students for school rule violations?
No. School administrators will investigate school rule violations and issue discipline accordingly. A school administrator may invite the PSLO to sit in on an interview to explain to a student the legal consequences of their behavior should that behavior continue or escalate. This is done as a proactive measure to influence students to choose positive behaviors.
7. What if my child has information concerning risk behaviors of other students and is afraid to say anything due to fear of retaliation?
Students reporting information concerning drugs, alcohol, or weapons will remain anonymous. Students can call 1-877-325-7867 without revealing their identity. School administrators and the PSLO will investigate retaliatory threats with proper consequences being rendered. The identity of students reporting risk behaviors of others is kept confidential. Students may utilize the “Quick 50” program.
8. Does having a full-time PSLO guarantee that my son/daughter will always be safe?
Maintaining safety is the responsibility of every person at school. It is expected that anyone with information regarding an unsafe act or possible dangerous situation will immediately contact school administration or the PSLO. School administrators work with the PSLO to dissolve and correct disagreements and/or harassment issues between students before they become more serious.
9. How can I contact my PSLO?
See each liaison officer's webpage.