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WCSD Chief of Police announces retirement, says district is on right track

A man wearing a button-up shirt with a tie is sitting while looking toward the camera and smiling.
Jose Davila IV
KUNR Public Radio
WCSD Chief of Police Jason Trevino sits for an interview in his office on Oct. 19, 2023 in Reno, Nev.

Washoe County School District Chief of Police Jason Trevino is stepping down.

Trevino spent 18 years with the district’s police department and for the last eight years he has been its chief. But on Jan. 12, 2024, Trevino will retire.

He said it is the right time for him to go.

“I feel like I’ve done what I set out to do with my career. I feel like I’ve done what I set out to do as the chief of police for this department,” he said. “And from the time I started as an officer and then became a sergeant, the deputy chief, and ultimately the chief, my goal was always just to leave the department better than it was when I started.”

Trevino came from the Washoe County Sheriff’s Office. He worked for 10 years there, five as a court security officer and five as a deputy sheriff.

He moved to the school district partially because he wanted to help steer kids away from bad habits and reduce chronic behaviors He also appreciated the work-life balance that working for the school district provides.

As for leaving the district better than he found it, he highlighted the installation of more safety infrastructure at schools. During his time in the district, it has updated its classroom locks, built secure perimeters around schools, and established single points of entry.

He also said that others in the district now recognize that all offices are responsible for safety, not just school police.

“Safety is on the forefront of people’s minds and it’s not just coming from school police and emergency management,” he said. “Our superintendent’s thinking about it. Our board’s thinking about it. Our facilities department’s thinking about it. Our transportation folks are thinking about it. And it took a long time to get these other departments to think about the safety piece because we’re an educational institution, right?”

Even just in the last year, the district has made significant investments into safety. One of Trevino’s officers now handles a firearm-sniffing dog, for example. The district is also installing an emergency alert system that it hopes will speed up response times in the event of an emergency on campus.

Trevino is positive about district safety moving forward.

“I think we’re definitely on the right track,” he said. “The district is moving in the right direction, and with the support of the board and support of the superintendent, good things will happen for them.”

He does have a priority for his successor. The Board of Trustees approved the addition of 10 new police positions to this school year’s budget, but has not been able to fill them yet.

Jose Davila IV is a corps member for Report for America, an initiative of the GroundTruth Project.

Jose Davila IV reports on K-12 education with a focus on Latino students and families in Northern Nevada and the Eastern Sierra. He is also a first-year Report for America corps member. Es bilingüe, su familia es de Puerto Rico, y ama los tostones de su padre más que nada.
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