The Bridge Kids is an initiative the Arlington Police Department started in 2016 to help kids at a nearby elementary school get home safely crossing over a pedestrian bridge . Parents and neighbors were concerned about juvenile delinquent behavior and bullying of kids near the bridge .
APD met with community members and the school administration to develop a comprehensive plan to address the problems .
The school staff would walk with the kids to the edge of campus where officers would be waiting . The officers would then walk and talk with the kids as they crossed the bridge into their neighborhoods safely . APD also began engaging with the children through presentations at the school that included anti-bullying messages and career planning .
The elementary school administration has credited the Bridge Kids program with an increase in academic achievements , positive classroom environments , and improved behavior for the students . The program continues to thrive as officers walk the students home from school each day .
The Arlington Police Department was presented with the 2018 Texas Municipal League Excellence Award for The Bridge Kids project in the Public Safety Category .