Officers Create a Positive School Environment

How two resource officers make SHS a better place


Photo by M. Beyer

Standing together, the two officers stand in front of the school that they love the most.

Eliza Phillips, Sports Co-editor

Robert Shaffer and Tony Saxton are two important individuals that make up the Spartanburg High School family.  As the full-time school resource officers, both greatly benefit the school in many different ways. Whether it’s by being a good listener to a student or handling dangerous incidents that occur within their jurisdiction, their contributions are crucial for the well-being of the school. Their interactions with the students and the safety procedures that they put in place make a tremendous difference in the daily life of students and faculty members. They continue each day to ensure that SHS is a safe and positive learning environment.

Many students love having resource officers who they are comfortable with, knowing that they will assist in any situation of need. Creating trust with the officers is meaningful and is important so that everyone can work together to keep the environment safe.

Ava Mobley (12) believes Shaffer and Saxton have made a positive impact on her view of police officers, in general.

“Our officers are always positive and always put everyone in a good mood when you see them,” Mobley said.

Something unique about the school’s resource officers is how they engage with many of the students and make connections with them throughout their high school career. There is a huge advantage in having a personal relationship with the resource officers because knowing that they will be there to help is a valuable resource to have. They give students guidance and answer questions they may have for any future references.

Saxton loves being there for any student who has an obstacle or issue that needs to be solved.

“One thing that I feel like is very important about a school officer is making positive relationships with the students. We want to come across as a helpful resource who students can come to if they need anything,” Saxton said.

These officers provide access to information and handle difficult situations including domestics, traffic and dealings with the Department of Social Services. In dangerous incidents, such as severe or inclement weather conditions, they make sure that every student performs the safety procedures that are enforced.  They monitor weather safety events or safety procedures for events such as homecoming, football games and prom. There are many situations that they deal with when they are present at school functions such as athletic events.

Shaffer, who recently returned from a stint at Boiling Springs High, takes pride in putting students’ safety before anything and making sure students feel comfortable and safe at any high school events.

“It’s about the students before anything, and when there are obstacles in the way, we always know that it’s going to be fine at the end of the day,” Shaffer said.