A Polk County Sheriff's Deputy is going above the call of duty to teach students a very special lesson. Every day students leave the classroom to spend a little one on one time with the officer.
There are many great things happening inside South Polk Elementary School, but what is happening outside is starting to catch people's attention.
With the flag held close to his heart, Polk County Sheriff's Officer Cody Day escorts Nikia Woody out to the flag pole. “They are good throughout the week; they have done their work all week. Pick the person who done great in their class,” said Sheriff Deputy Cody Day.
Officer Day is the School's Resource Officer. He has no military background, but wants to encourage every child to learn the importance of the American flag. “Learn respect for symbols of our country and to understand that symbolizes our freedom and our gifts that we've been given but the vets lost everything.”
He explains the process of unfolding it and handling it with respect, while the student slowly raises it to full staff. “I was excited and nervous at the same time,” said 5th grader Nikia Woody.
Each day, a new student has the honors to spend a little quality time with Officer Day. It's time he looks forward to each morning, just as much as the students. “One on one time. I can put a name with a face and they are able to interact with me more on a personal level,” said Day.
Different local veteran organizations support his lesson. They've worked one on one with the officer to ensure he is teaching students correctly. Making it a learning experience for all of those involved. “Flag is at half-staff that day or is it full staff? Different things for folding it. Kids learn, I've learned with them.”
His message to the students is simple; honor those lost and appreciate our freedom. Lessons that extend well beyond the classroom. “We need to take care of it, how much it means to our country. It’s very important to us here,” said Woody.
Raising the flag may only last a few minutes, but for the students, it’s a lifelong lesson. “I Like being to put up the flag and we're blessed to have Officer Cody to take care of us every day.”
There are over 300 students at the school, Officer Day hopes to give everyone a chance to raise the flag by next year.