2018-02-07 / News from our Schools

Stratton students learn from local law enforcement

By Dee Menear Irregular Staff Writer

Carrabassett Valley Chief of Police Mark Lopez measures June Clark’s foot during a Crime Scene Investigation lesson. 
(Dee Menear photo) Carrabassett Valley Chief of Police Mark Lopez measures June Clark’s foot during a Crime Scene Investigation lesson. (Dee Menear photo) EUSTIS — Wednesday, Jan. 31, students at Stratton School had the opportunity to spend a few hours with law enforcement officers. Wilton Chief of Police Heidi Wilcox, Carrabassett Valley Chief of Police Mark Lopez, Maine State Police Trooper Jill Monahan, Maine Game Warden Scott Stevens and Franklin County Deputy Keith Madore interacted with students, talked about their professions, and even taught a little science.

According to Principal Barry London, the Student Wellness Team helped in planning the event. London said the team is a group of students which strive to bring awareness about the importance of nutrition and exercise to the school, as is required by state. The team also takes it one step further and focuses on the social and emotional welfare of the student body.

Officers spent time in classrooms talking to students about their work and the education needed to work in law enforcement. Lopez gave eighth grade students a lesson in the science behind Crime Scene Investigation. “The Evidence Response team has to figure out what happened without anyone telling them what happened,” Lopez said as he walked students through the process of collecting evidence.

Shelia Lecander’s second grade class learned about the tools Madore carried on his belt, including handcuffs. Students and staff comfortable enough were given the chance to feel what it was like to be handcuffed.

Wilcox, who used to be a Franklin County Deputy, helped in Patty Simpson’s first grade class. Wilcox told students Stratton School was her favorite school because students were always so friendly and welcoming.

Law Enforcement Day wrapped up with a question and answer session in which officers answered questions generated by the Student Wellness Team. Students were curious about the officers’ favorite school subject and their first job.

When asked, the officers had plenty of sound advice to give to middle school students. Wilcox cautioned students about putting themselves on the internet. “Don’t give out anything you wouldn’t give to your grandmother,” she said.

Monahan and Lopez urged students to stay out of trouble and make good choices. Stevens noted the importance of incorporating interests with a career.

London said Law Enforcement Day went well and students were able to relate many aspects of the event with discussions they have had with Stratton School Social Worker Andrea Drumstas.

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