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ACSC names chief for school’s first police department 

By Lindsay Doty

 The Avon Community School Corporation Board of Trustees has named Chase Lyday as the school corporation’s first chief of police for the district’s new school police department.

Lyday will head up the formation and staffing of the ACSC Police Department. He previously served as a school resource officer and school safety coordinator with the Metropolitan School District of Decatur Township.

Lyday was involved in starting that district’s police department and was also a deputy sheriff for Marion County.

He currently serves as the president of the Indiana School Resource Officers Association and on the board of directors for the National Association of School Resource Officers.

“Chase Lyday stood out among the many applicants for several reasons,” ACSC Superintendent Maggie Hoernemann said. “He has excellent experience as an SRO, is viewed as a leader at the state and national levels in the field of school safety, is known for fostering positive relationships with kids and is a champion of school safety. We are confident that Chief Lyday will help us build a strong foundation for an effective police department that will serve our students and staff.”

In October 2019, district leaders, Avon Police Chief Sean Stoops and Avon Assistant Chief Brian Nugent jointly presented options to the community for the future of ACSC’s School Resource Officer program which included the option of implementing a school police department. The board voted on this measure in November 2019.

District leaders say the new ACSC  police department is not a security team but a  certified police force whose members will be sworn in and go through the academy. They will have additional training for school resource officers which focuses on working with young people.

“This is a significant step forward and would not have been possible without the leadership of Deb Swain-Bayless, ACSC’s Safety Coordinator. Mrs. Swain-Bayless’s collaboration with multiple community agencies and her expertise continue to add tremendous value to our focus on school safety,” said Superintendent Hoernemann.

Lyday will begin on Feb. 10.

In a prepared statement, ACSC communication coordinator Stacey L. Moore, reported that Lyday’s annual salary will be $80,000. “After conducting research of other central Indiana school districts that employ a Police Chief, we determined a competitive salary for Chief Lyday is $80,000,” Moore stated. “None of Chief Lyday’s salary will be paid out of the Referendum Fund, but will be paid out of ACSC’s Operations Fund.”

The district will be going through more changes this school year as the search begins for a new superintendent. Hoernemann announced this month that she will be retiring at the end of the school year.

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