Colonel Gray High School could keep its police officer a little longer thanks to donations from the community.
Principal Kevin Whitrow said the hope is there will be enough money to keep Charlottetown police Const. Tim Keizer working at the school through to the end of the school year.
"The goal is to get a full year of data, a full year of experience so we would know really how the program did benefit the students and the school and the community," he said.
Keizer has been working at Colonel Gray since the school year started as part of a pilot project, but the program was supposed to end in January when funding dried up and neither the city nor the province were willing to pay for the rest of year.
Since then, members of the community have been stepping up to help keep him in place.
Whitrow said the school wasn't soliciting money, but rather a lot of parent and community involvement led to the donations.
"It was more a case of the community coming to us than us going to the community," he said.
Although he didn't know exactly how much money had been raised as of Thursday, Whitrow said it was close to what was needed for Keizer to finish out the year and he has been told there is at least enough to keep the officer at the school until the end of April.
"There's certainly energy to try and make sure that we do have a full year of experience to know what's accomplished at each part of the school year," he said.
While at the school Keizer has been dealing with many different issues, including drug use with about 40 per cent of Colonel Gray students reportedly abusing or using drugs this year.
Although Keizer's time at the school was supposed to end in January, Whitrow said he is still there working teachers' hours.
Whitrow said the community donations aren't meant to be a long-term solution and he thinks data from the pilot project will show it was a valuable, effective program.
"Absolutely," he said.
Coun. David MacDonald, chair of Charlottetown's protective and emergency services committee, said he had no doubts the program would save money in the long run through prevention.
"This has been a very successful thing," he said.
MacDonald said the city doesn't have any more money for the program this year, but it is willing to extend Keizer's time at Colonel Gray if someone else comes up with the necessary funding.
"Without any sustainable funding, long term in place from the province then we can't run this program again," he said.