JSO looking to fill dozens of school crossing guard vacancies as school year nears

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Getting your child to and from school safely is an important job but JSO said it has dozens of crossing guard vacancies this summer.

It’s not only about safety.

“School crossing guards are sometimes the first smiling face that these students see every day,” JSO Sergeant Skye Barber, with the safety and prevention unit, said.

The job of a crossing guard is low hours with high importance.

“They have one of the most critical functions in the school system,” Sergeant Barber said.

The need for folks on the crosswalk is bigger than it’s ever been. JSO said there are around 60 crossing guard vacancies and if it cannot fill them it will have to pull officers off the streets.

“We try and backfill those vacancies with patrol officers, with traffic units, with community service officers, and that takes them away from their primary function,” Sergeant Barber said.

When those security measures aren’t in place, getting to and from school becomes dangerous.

“I remember working cases where people just run right through the stop sign while they’re out there with children,” JSO School Crossing Guard Program Logistical Officer Keith Jowers said.

JSO needs your help getting kids across our streets.

“They really do it because they want to make a difference. They really do it because it’s an important job, it’s an important function,” Sergeant Barber said.

Crossing guards work two hours a day for $10.75 an hour.

JSO says applicants must pass a background check and drug screening and complete eight hours of classroom and field training.

Crossing guards are needed in the following zip codes: 32205, 32207, 32209, 32211, 32216, 32217, 32220, 32221, 32224, 32233, 32245, 32246, 32254, 32256, 32257, 32258, and 32259.