ALBANY — Dougherty County School System Police Chief Troy Conley took Wednesday’s assessment report of his department’s effectiveness in stride and said he would evaluate the 90-page document in an effort to improve the department.
“Overall I was pleased with outcome of the assessment,” Conley Thursday said after taking some time to look over the report. “There is a great deal of information that was provided, I will evaluate the information and take the suggestions under consideration.
In mid-June, citing concerns from staff and some board members, DCSS Interim Superintendent Butch Mosely asked former Georgia Bureau of Investigation agent Gary Rothwell to conduct an assessment of the department — with Conley and Assistant Chief J.C. Phillips at the center of attention.
Over a span of several weeks assessment team interviewed Conley and Phillips, all seven Board members, DCSS attorney Tommy Coleman, 16 of the department’s 22 full-time officers, District Attorney Greg Edwards, Albany Police Chief John Proctor, Doughtery County Police Chief Jackie Battle, Dougherty Sheriff Kevin Sproul and former DCSS Assistant Superintendent Kenneth Goseer among others.
“I thought the assessment team was fair, and it is always helpful to have a fresh set of eyes that can offer suggestions for improvement,” said Conley.
The reports suggested many changes for the department, most dealing with administrative issues by pointing out morale problems stemming from a command management style perceived as autocratic and retaliatory to officers who either voiced or filed complaints. The team also recommended splitting Phillips’ current role as assistant chief and chief investigator and hiring an administrative assistant for DCSS PD headquarters.
“My greatest concern is that we may not be able to implement some of the suggested changes due limited resources,” Conley said.
The report also listed strengths of the department citing, “DCSS police personnel are experienced and competent performing unique law enforcement and security functions in school settings.”
“I am pleased with the overall operations of the department,” Conley said, “and with a few adjustments it will continue to run smoothly.