WOOD COUNTY, OH (WTOL) - A small change in the routine for Wood County Sheriff Deputies is making a big impact in the lives of students and parents in the county's school districts.
Students at Eastwood Middle School, along with Elmwood and Otsego, are use to seeing their School Resource Officer around school. But now they're meeting other members of the Wood County Sheriff's Office like Lieutenant Holland.
"We do know that a uniformed presence does decrease problems," said Wood County Sheriff Mark Wasylyshyn.
Sheriff Wasylyshyn asked his road patrol deputies to stop in the schools during their shift to add an extra police presence after recent events in schools locally and nationwide.
"We have a great relationship with our community. They know we care and we are here to help and care and yes the response is very positive," Sheriff Wasylyshyn said reassuringly.
Eastwood's School District showed their appreciation appreciation through a tweet Friday.
And the new initiative goes beyond extra security. It's about getting deputies familiar with the kids and staff as well as building layouts incase they do need to respond to a call for help.
Lt. Holland stopped by Eastwood Middle School just as part of his normal shift. He said he wanted to meet some of the kids, walk the halls and even have lunch with them.
"I think that is the most important thing part of that is the kids getting to know the officers they are not scared if they have to interact with a police officer because they are someone they are familiar with.," said Ed Eding, the principal of Eastwood Middle School.