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Newtown parents want police

– Since the elementary school massacre in her hometown, Sarah Findley has found herself driving by her children’s schools in Newtown, checking to make sure police are still stationed outside.

The mother of three is among many people calling on school officials to keep up the police presence at schools in Newtown, which has had two officers at each of its schools since a gunman killed 20 children and six women inside Sandy Hook Elementary School on Dec. 14.

“I think we’re all just shaken to the core,” said Findley, whose children all attend schools other than Sandy Hook. “I think it made it possible for the people who were maybe wavering about sending their kids to school to actually be able to do it.”

Schools Superintendent Janet Robinson also wants the police presence to continue, saying children have not ventured outside school for recess because of anxiety.

The Sandy Hook school remains closed. Students and staff are using a school in neighboring Monroe.

Parents asked the Police Commission and Board of Education this week to continue to provide police at the schools.

District officials say they are working up financial projections for what added security would cost.

John Bello, a real estate developer, said his 7-year-old-son, who lost two friends in the shooting at Sandy Hook, has been happy to see the police officers stationed at his Head O’Meadow Elementary School in Newtown since the tragedy.

“I said, ‘Did you see the police?’ and he said, ‘Yeah, that’s good,’ ” Bello said.

Bello said he believes the schools need to keep armed security officers, even if it means paying more in taxes or cutting other programs.

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