MIDWEST CITY, Oklahoma - Midwest City police are now patrolling the halls of the city’s elementary schools. 

When Officer Charles Denson reads to the kids at Ridgecrest Elementary, he becomes a big kid himself; laughing and joking around with his new friends. But when it comes to protecting the kids, he’s all business.

“Making ourselves visible. Let those know who have those intentions that we are here, we are active and being proactive not reactive,” said Denson.

This is really a multi-step plan to protect kids while building important relationships with them.

“Getting on the knee, talking to them. Understanding what they’re going through and talking it out. Letting them know, it’s not the end of the day. A lot of things can change from and the situation can get a lot better,” said Denson.

Principal Donna Collier said, “The whole goal is to be proactive, for our police officers to be viable, not only in our schools but in the morning meet and greet time, and at dismissals as well and in the cafeteria, out at recess.”

The plan is to have three officers pop into six elementary schools several times throughout the day, in addition to their normal duties. They’ll also follow school busses and issue tickets to people who blow past stopped busses. It helps keep the kids safe, gives parents and teachers peace of mind, and Officer Denson said the benefits: the hugs and high-fives, are the best.

“Man, they are hyped,” said Denson. “They’re stoked to see us, and it starts the day off right.”