A RAMSEY school has become the first in Huntingdonshire to have a police officer dedicated to working with pupils on a weekly basis. Pc Matt Thomas role will be to provide support to vulnerable children and families, ensure children remain in edu
A RAMSEY school has become the first in Huntingdonshire to have a police officer dedicated to working with pupils on a weekly basis.
Pc Matt Thomas' role will be to provide support to vulnerable children and families, ensure children remain in education and reduce anti-social behaviour amongst young people.
The role will see him visit Abbey College in Ramsey every Thursday afternoon during term time as part of the national Safer Schools Partnership.
The work started last month with Pc Thomas already providing input into lessons at the school, describing the role of the police, and meeting with parents.
Another key area of his work was to identify children who may be heading down the wrong path and into crime and to help them avoid this avenue.
Pc Thomas said: "This is an exciting opportunity for me to engage with students and staff and to help them address any problems or concerns they may have.
"Young people are not often given the opportunity to positively engage with police and I hope that my presence at the college will enable the youth of Ramsey to get involved in policing in their area."
Wayne Birks, headteacher at Abbey College, stressed that the pilot project was nothing to do with school discipline or behaviour.
He said it is about encouraging closer partnerships between the police and the community.
"This is a wholly positive thing. It's about building relationships with the community," he said. "If we can help the police get to know the community better then it is worth doing.
"It's about helping the police get more actively involved with the community and become more visible. It is also about promoting a positive relationship between the police and young people. This is not about depriving the community of policing needs - it is about joined up thinking."
A spokesman for Cambridgeshire County Council said they believed Abbey College was the first in Huntingdonshire to have a police officer visit on a weekly basis. Other schools, such as Impington College, have PCSOs that visit and schools in Wisbech and Peterborough are visited by Pcs.