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New high school already named in 2004: Twelve Bridges High School

Sheriff's office to provide school resource officer
By: Steve Archer, Reporter
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Naming new schools in Lincoln took a weird turn Tuesday night when it was reported that the Western Placer Unified School District board of trustees could stop considering names for the new high school.

That’s because the school already has a name: Twelve Bridges High School.

School district Superintendent Scott Leaman said he and his secretary, Rosemary Knudson, were researching previous board policies for naming schools in the district’s archives when they came across the May 4, 2004 meeting minutes in which the proposed new high school and six other schools were named.

The district superintendent at the time was Roger Yohe and Leaman was the assistant superintendent of instructional services. Paul Long, a current school district member, was board president at the time and the other trustees were Karen Roberts, James McLeod, Earl Mentze and Dennis Sonnenburg.

The committee responsible for naming the schools also named Twelve Bridges Elementary School, Twelve Bridges Middle School, Foskett Ranch Elementary School, Lincoln Crossing Elementary School and Lincoln Crossing Middle School.

Leaman told the board of trustees it could take no action and let the name stand or go about renaming the school.

“The timeline for the elementary school was truncated,” Leaman said. “We do have a little bit of time for the high school. My recommendation is to keep the name, Twelve Bridges Middle School.”

“In 2004, the high school was going to open in 2009,” Leaman added. “We were going to build a school a year.”

Although the new high school name was not popular with the board, none of the trustees wanted to reverse the action of a previous board.

“I’m not in favor of Twelve Bridges High School but it was a board action,” Wyatt said. “I don’t like it because it separates the community. Twelve Bridges is a city unto themselves.”

School resource officer

The school board also voted to go with the Placer County Sheriff’s Office to provide a school resource officer instead of the Lincoln Police Department to save money and provide greater service to the schools. Specifically, Leaman said the district wants to spend less money, have a five-days-per-week officer, a backup officer if the school resources officer is absent and a presence at football games.

“Lincoln Police Department is great but it is small,” Leaman said. “We talked with the LPD for quite a long time and it became apparent there would be no backup officer.”

The current cost of a school resource officer from the Lincoln Police Department is $130,000 per year. The cost from the Sheriff’s Office is $115,000 per year for two years and includes a car and other requirements the district wanted.

Leaman said the current school resource officer, Steve Kreuger of the Lincoln Police Department, did a great job.

“I really want to thank Steve Kreuger for his service to the district,” Leaman said. “He has been there for us.”

Wyatt agreed.

“The kids feel safe and protected when Steve is there,” Wyatt said. “He did a great job.”

Long said Kreuger was “a counselor to troubled kids.”

Although a contract has not been signed, the board gave Leaman the authority to close the deal.

Kreuger, who has handled the school resource officer duties for the past three years, said he is disappointed by the board’s decision. He will be reassigned to dayshift patrol.

“I absolutely love being the School Resource Officer,” Kreuger said. “It has been by far my most challenging, fulfilling and rewarding assignment at the Lincoln Police Department.”

Kreuger said he has worked hard to develop strong trust and solid relationships with the students, faculty and parents in the district.

“Some students at LHS actually know me, along with other LPD officers, from when they were in elementary and middle school,” Kreuger said. “Last year we worked diligently on ‘See something, Say something’ at LHS.”

Kreuger said the program was designed to encourage students to report suspicious or dangerous activity at school or friends and family in need of mental health assistance.

“A number of students came to me first,” Kreuger said. “That takes a high level of trust, strong rapport and mutual respect that I believe you cannot contract out to another agency.  In my opinion, the school resource officer is a position that absolutely should remain with Lincoln Police Department.”