Private security firm hired for TCSS

Published 10:26 am Saturday, February 24, 2024

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During Thursday night’s board meeting, the Troup County School Board hired a private company to provide campus security at all middle and high schools.

The board voted unanimously to hire Synergy Security Services, a local company from LaGrange, to provide security services. TCSS had originally hired its own campus security officers to man weapons detection systems and provide general security, but School Safety Coordinator Steve Heaton said they’ve had more than 50% turnover in those positions since August. A total of 11 officers had been hired, according to previous reporting.

“We are struggling to keep them in schools, so we thought it would be more efficient and effective to … outsource these services to a professional security company,” Heaton said.

The total cost from Synergy was provided on a per-hour basis, which is $27.60 per hour. Each security officer will work 1,520 hours for a total of 190 days. Overtime will be paid at $37.10 per hour.  That makes the base pay for each security officer $41,952.

Heaton said the school system’s starting pay for a security officer starts at $29.10 an hour, so TCSS will be saving money by going with Synergy and won’t have to worry about staffing.

The initial quote from Synergy was for three security officers, but Heaton said another officer has resigned since the quote was sent, so Synergy will actually provide four officers initially.

As TCSS security officers leave, the position will be filled by Synergy, Heaton said in a previous interview.

The contract says Synergy will manage and maintain safety and security services Monday through Friday 7:15 am to 3:45 pm based on 190 days school calendar.

The company will monitor the school system’s metal detectors; assess and report potential concerns to the school resource officer, principal and their immediate supervisor; control the admittance to school property of unauthorized persons and perform First Aid and CPR when necessary.