Holcomb Elementary counselor Antoinette Bueno invited K-9 Officer Izzy, a Belgian Malinois, and her handlers Officer Denise Valenzuela and Officer Dominique Bright, to the school, during Red Ribbon Week. According to Valenzuela, Izzy is being trained to sniff out and locate contraband (drugs) and weapons. The two officers, work at Juvenile Hall in San Bernardino and the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department and provided an exciting lesson for the students.
Over 100 students sat quietly, while the young Malinois swept her nose along the benches in search of her target that the officers hid. After locating her target, the crowd cheered and the K-9 received a tennis ball as a treat. Izzy completed two searches of the multi-use room, during her presentation.
“The K-9 assembly was great,” said Bueno who she “wanted students to see how an actual K-9 officer worked in the field. In addition to the assembly, Bueno went to different classrooms and encouraged students to make good choices in life. She wants her students to lead a productive, happy and healthy lifestyle.
Highland resident and Holcomb program manager Krista Bjur thought the assembly was important for the students. “The students learned how a K-9 officer worked with their human counterparts,” said Bjur. “From the excited noise, I knew that Ms. Bueno brought in an active assembly that had an important message.” Bjur said. She also said “This type of assembly showed the students that law enforcement and the school is committed to their well-being.”
Officer Bright told the students they could be whatever they aspire to be. At one point, Bright told the students, “You all are so smart. You are amazing.” She educated them on the pitfalls of drugs and their use. Bright said that she “liked the positive interaction (the students) had today with Izzy and our lessons.”