PERU, Ind. – Administrators at Peru Community Schools say they are taking steps to create their own in-house police department this year to protect the district’s five school buildings. The Peru police department and school corporation have mutually agreed to end the contract to allow the district to form its own police force that should be operational by the 2017–2018 school year. Peru Chief of Police Mike Meeks said the move will free up the police department from any liability for the student resource officers. Superintendent Sam Watkins said forming a school police department run by a police chief would allow better coordination among officers and open up more opportunities to receive grant funding to pay for the department. He went on to say “This is really a win-win for everybody. We don’t have any issues with our city Police Department. Nothing is broke. We think this is in the best interest for our kids, and we just feel we can do it a little better this way.” State code allows school corporations to form police departments, appoint officers, prescribe uniforms, and provide emergency vehicles.