TAMPA, Fla. (FOX 13) - Hillsborough will soon become the first county in Florida to expand its school crossing guard program to middle schools.
County commissioners unanimously approved the measure Wednesday.
"Today we really felt like the commissioners heard us," said Danielle Waymire, one of the many parents who spearheaded the effort to bring crossing guards to county middle schools.
Worried about their children's safety, many parents banded together earlier this year to raise money to hire their own crossing guards. However, it was expensive. At Mulrennan Middle School in Valrico, to staff crosswalks in the mornings and afternoons, for one semester, it cost the group $13,000.
"When you have a school in place and you have crosswalks, these children have to have an adult to guide them," said Waymire.
County Commissioner Stacy White created the proposal, which plans to create nearly 200 new positions.
The Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office will be responsible for overseeing the hiring process and monitoring the program.
According to the sheriff's office, they plan to hire 141 new crossing guards, 24 new supervisors, and two community service aides over the next three years.
The county said it will direct $510,000 to expand the program.