Regional high school appoints school resource officer

The search for a new Martha's Vineyard Regional High School principal is down to two candidates. — File photo by Susan Safford

Oak Bluffs Police Sergeant Michael Marchand has been appointed the School Resource Officer (SRO) for Martha’s Vineyard Regional High School (MVRHS), Superintendent of schools James Weiss and Oak Bluffs Police Chief Erik Blake said in a joint press release emailed to the Times late Wednesday afternoon.

Sergeant Marchand will assume his full-time duties at the high school on September 2. With the urging of the Martha’s Vineyard Youth Task Force, the MVRHS school committee approved $100,000 for salary and benefits for an SRO in the high school’s fiscal 2015 budget, approved by town meeting voters Island-wide last spring.

In addition to the salary and benefits for the position, Mr. Weiss said the high school would provide Sergeant Marchand with an office and a computer to allow him to connect with both the school’s and police department’s record systems. The town of Oak Bluffs will provide him with a vehicle and replace him with a new officer.

The high school staff and Oak Bluffs town officials drafted a memorandum of understanding detailing the SRO’s duties and responsibilities last spring. They waited to formally appoint an SRO until the arrival this month of the high school’s new principal, Gil Traverso. Mr. Traverso and Sgt. Marchand met earlier this week, Mr. Weiss said.

Chief Blake said he was happy that the school and police department worked collaboratively to fill the vital position, according to the press release.

“The officer chosen, Sergeant Marchand, will be instrumental in strengthening the relationship with school staff and, most importantly, students,” Chief Blake said.