By Mike Kruzman /

South Lyon City Council has approved adding a School Resource Officer to the middle schools.

Mayor Dan Pelchat said this is an issue going on coast to coast and he is aware that members of Council and the community have strong feelings on the topic. In the wake of the Oxford school shootings in November, South Lyon Community Schools’ Superintendent Steve Archibald asked for an officer to placed at the middle schools, to which Police Chief Chris Sovik agreed to do. However, at a December City Council meeting, funding for the positions came into question, with multiple Councilmembers initially asking that the schools bear those costs.

At this week’s meeting, City Council was presented a contract for an officer for the remaining 6 months of the school year, as prepared by the Chief and City Staff. Seeing how the City would be reimbursed led Councilwoman Maggie Kurtzweil to reconsider her stance. With 96.5% of the City’s costs to be covered, she said the remaining 3.5% wasn’t significant enough for her to turn it down.

Kurtzweil said it was unfortunate that the school district waited for a tragedy before deciding to replace an officer they once had at the middle schools, and that maybe they will plan better for the next fall. The agreement is only for this school year, and no long term agreement is in place. Kurtweil noted that if the district doesn’t like their price, they are free to shop around and ask other law enforcement agencies like the Oakland County Sheriff’s Office or Green Oak, as examples.

The officer will have an office at each of the two middle schools and split his time at both. It was believed that keeping his schedule for each school under wraps could better deter threats.

City Council voted unanimously in favor of the agreement. The agreement is for a total of $56,500 for the period from December 8, 2021 to June 17, 2022.