The Community Engagement Officer Program (CEO) is a community-based response to the need to provide a safe and supportive learning environment for our students. The partnership between the Bellevue School District (BSD) and the Bellevue Police Department (BPD) reaffirms the agreed commitment to build relationships with youth, staff members, and the community to reinforce collaborative problem solving and promote a safe and inclusive positive learning community.

Interim Superintendent Art Jarvis Recommends Against Implementation of the CEO Program – Press Release, 2/15/23

Program Goals

  • Work together to maintain a safe and supportive learning environment.
  • Build relationships and foster trust with BSD students and staff to reinforce collaborative problem solving.
  • Strive to keep students out of the criminal justice system when legally possible.
  • Create and expand programs to educate and inform staff and students about safety-related topics.
  • Provide a positive role model for students, staff and families.

Overview and History

Established in 1996, the School Resource Officer Program (SRO) brought the BSD and the BPD together as a community-based response to keep students and staff safe.

In March 2020, BSD schools shifted to remote learning due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and SROs returned to regular patrol duties. National protests in 2020 brought attention to racism and police violence, which led the Washington State Legislature to pass laws requiring changes to SRO programs in K-12 settings. Still, the presence of officers in BSD schools has become contentious where some believe the presence of officers is an important layer of safety on campus, while others believe students are too often criminalized and negatively impacted.

October 2020

SRO Advisory Committee Established

BSD Superintendent establishes the SRO Advisory Committee to critically examine the role of law enforcement in our schools, consisting of students, educators, parents, administrators, district staff and BPD.

June 2021 to October 2021

Program Reform Approved

The SRO Advisory Committee proposes program options:

  1. Reform SRO Program
  2. Transform SRO Program

BSD’s Interim Superintendent chooses to reform the district’s SRO program.

November 2021 to October 2022

Design Task Force Established

A Design Task Force is established, consisting of BSD building administrators and BPD officers. The group considers the feedback from the SRO Advisory Committee and develops the framework for the proposed CEO Program.

November 2022 to December 2022

Community Engagement Begins

November 2022 to December 2022

Community Engagement Begins

BSD and BPD seek feedback from staff, students, families and the community at large on the proposal for a reformed program. An online survey, along with in-person events, are hosted to provide the community with several ways to engage.

How does the Proposed CEO Program Differ from the Former SRO Program?

Community Engagement Officer Program Model

School Resource Officer Program Model


  • CEOs to be stationed at a central district office, will be assigned to respond to a sector that includes elementary, middle and high schools.
  • CEOs to be introduced at the beginning of each school year.
  • CEOs to wear a polo shirt and pants as their primary uniform, with an option to wear a traditional patrol uniform.
  • SROs were assigned to the four comprehensive high schools, responded
  • elsewhere as needed.
  •  SROs were sometimes introduced at the beginning of the school year.
  • SROs had one uniform option: traditional patrol uniform.


  • CEOs to undergo specialized and focused training in working with adolescents, in accordance to RCW 28A.310.515. (E.g., youth mental health, trauma-informed approaches, de-escalation techniques, bias free policing and cultural competency, etc.)
  • CEOs to be mutually trained with BSD staff to adhere to district policies regarding Student Behavior, Corrective Actions and/or Interventions. CEOs are prohibited from becoming involved in formal school discipline situations that are the responsibility of school administrators.
  • SROs received generalized training in working with adolescents and trauma-informed care of youth.
  • SROs were sometimes used to enforce school rule violations.

Oversight and Communication

  • Annual report to the community on outcomes, complaints/concerns, and calls for service.
  • Annual review and approval of the interlocal agreement between the City of Bellevue and BSD.
  • Creation of a formalized and easily accessible complaint process.
  • Monthly activity reports were provided by SROs to BSD leadership.
  • Agreement between the City of Bellevue and BSD auto-renewed on a yearly basis, which was last reviewed and approved in 2013.
  • Complaint process was not easily accessible.

Engagement with Students, Staff and Families

  • CEOs to participate in purposeful and proactive engagement opportunities, such as information sessions and learning forums.
  • CEOs to provide mentorship, with the end goal of relationship building and collaborative-problem solving.
  • SRO interactions with students and staff occurred when responding to calls for service and support, casual contacts, and occasional educational opportunities.

The Bellevue School District acknowledges that we learn, work, live and gather on the Indigenous Land of the Coast Salish peoples, specifically the Duwamish and Snoqualmie Tribes. We thank these caretakers of this land, who have lived and continue to live here, since time immemorial.