Drug Abuse Resistance Education (D.A.R.E.)
The D.A.R.E. program was developed to address the alarming increase of drug abuse, a serious problem that plagues more and more of our young people.
Studies show that students who use alcohol or other drugs before the age of 15, are twice as likely to develop problems with drugs.
D.A.R.E. uses a different approach to educating young people. Based on research, the traditional scare tactics that preach the hardship of drug abuse are de-emphasized. Teens want to act grown-up and many of them view smoking, drinking, and the misuse of drugs are passports to adulthood. D.A.R.E. tries to teach the students what being grown-up really means: not giving in to peer-pressure, making your own decisions, and learning to dope with life’s problems in positive ways.
Police officers serve as instructors for the D.A.R.E. program. The officers selected have been carefully screened and have been trained to present a 17-lesson instructional unit to fifth grade classes who will soon be attending junior high school. The officers visit each class once a week.
Resistance education focuses on four main areas:
1) Providing accurate information about alcohol and drugs
2) Teaching students decision-making skills
3) Showing students who to resist peer pressure
4) Giving teens ideas for alternatives to drug use
The D.A.R.E. curriculum provides over 20 hours of instruction to fifth grade students at all schools in District 109 and Holy Cross School. The curriculum covers tobacco, alcohol, marijuana, prescription, and over the counter drugs. The responses to the D.A.R.E. curriculum have been overwhelmingly positive from both the instructing officers, students and the schools. The curriculum assists District 109 with their State mandates for health programs. In addition to our current D.A.R.E. Officers, we have seven Youth Officers. The Youth Officers provide additional services to the middle and high schools.
Tips for Parents
The success of this program for your children depends upon your reinforcement of the ideas taught in D.A.R.E. Please contact your D.A.R.E. officer if you have any questions.
Establish family rules that make the use of drugs non-negotiable
Educate yourself about drugs, so that you can talk informatively with your children and answer their questions
Know your children’s friends and the other parents. Establish a network that will bring you closer to your children and their activities.
The more you are in touch with your children, the more you will be aware of any possible problems that may arise.