WA Police to go back to class

Acting Senior Sergeant Tom Tristram and Constable Mel Duthie will offer to host groups of kindergarten children to tour the station from the next school term, teach protective behaviours to address physical and sexual abuse and run cyber-bullying workshops.

Const Duthie said in some private schools in the area there were laptop programs from Year 4 and younger children were using iPads regularly.

Acting Sen. Sgt. Tristram said the station would also offer to have officers at sports carnivals, school barbecues and classroom activities and said the time to do this had been made available by the recently Frontline 2020 operating model trialled in the south east metro district.

The station is also publishing in school newsletters to explain their increased presence in schools and promote local policing teams and police presence in social media.

Belmont Primary School principal Trevor Vaughan said community engagement used to happen all the time and officers were once assigned to high schools, but that had not happened for years.

He said Sen.Sgt Tristram wanted to be involved in the school so students would see police offering to read to kids and attending sports days and not just as enforcers of the law.

‘We’ll be getting them involved as much as possible,’ Mr Vaughan said.

While the school has little issue with graffiti or crime among its students, Mr Vaughan said the community engagement efforts would be a preventative measure ahead of his students going into high school.