Iowa Senator Joni Ernst met with students at North Scott High School.

During her visit, Ernst learned about the regional innovation center, a new partnership with Eastern Iowa Community College focusing on trade careers.

The center will have programs such as a diesel program, and a vet tech certificate program would be one example, construction, animal science, and plant science.

“All across Iowa,” Ernst said, “I hear employers that are looking for these very specific skills. Wow, they’ve got it right here.”

Ernst also spoke with Eldridge Police Chief Joe Sisler about making the school safer.

“We need more funding to hire more school resource officers,” said Sisler.

As of now, there is only one school resource officer that covers seven schools in the North Scott Community School District. Sisler hopes to add more officers and is looking for federal money to do it.

North Scott Community School District Superintendent Joe Stutting showed off technology like the halo system currently in place at the high school.

“It’s a system that can detect anywhere from gunshot residue, it can pick up vaping, narcotics, if a student falls and gets hurt or a teacher falls and gets hurt and they say help it’s going to alert all faculty and the school resource officer and it pinpoints what locations it’s at so they can respond to it,” Sisler said.

Sisler also feels that with more school resource officers students will be able to form a personal connections