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The Efficacy Of Dare Essay

2410 words - 10 pages

Today, many kids in their adolescent years are finding themselves experimenting with tobacco, drugs, and alcohol. Curiosity strikes, and some individuals just don’t know what they are getting themselves into. Peer pressure is also a major underlying cause of experimentation with these substances at an early age. There is no escaping from coming into contact with these substances, especially in a persons youth ages. They are everywhere and readily available, the only thing a parent or guardian can do about this problem is to educate their children. Some people recognized the importance and put a plan into action. The Drug Abuse Resistance Education program was founded in 1983 by the Los ...view middle of the document...

DARE is one of these preventative drug education programs that is intended to stop drug use before it begins. The purpose is to help kids say “no” to drug, alcohol, and tobacco use by teaching them techniques to resist peer pressure. DARE also offers students a chance to gain a dependable, trustworthy adult friend, develop a positive attitude towards law enforcement personnel, and learn greater respect for the law. (An Introduction to the National DARE Parent Program) Drug use and abuse may not seem like it is too common in high school aged children, and definitely not in grade school children, but statistics show otherwise. Just last week at my former high school, there was a drug bust, where seven individuals were arrested. Never would I have thought this would be happening, especially so close to home.
The DARE mission statement is “Teaching students good decision-making skills to help them lead safe and healthy lives” The DARE vision statement “A world in which students everywhere are empowered to respect others and choose to lead lives free from violence, substance abuse, and other dangerous behaviors (D.A.R.E. America).” Today, approximately eighty percent of America’s school districts are applying the DARE program, and twenty six million children participate in DARE yearly. The program is also available in over fifty-four countries, benefiting over thirty six million kids worldwide yearly. (D.A.R.E. America) The program is intended to teach youths early on to prevent them from doing drugs in the future. The program usually starts by the last year of grade school in order to teach kids to say no to drugs in their high school years (An Introduction to the National DARE Parent Program).
The program is taught by a police officer in the community who has been through an initial eighty-hour training course to teach in elementary schools. To be able to train other officers to become a DARE instructor or mentor, an additional forty-hour training course is required for that officer. An officer can be assigned up to five schools a semester, and visit each assigned school once a week. The DARE officers are responsible for teaching an innovative curriculum that emphasizes self-esteem, responsibility for ones own behavior, and saying “no” to drug experimentation. The officers conduct assembly programs and follow-up visits to individual classrooms and hold formal training sessions for teachers on drug use (An Introduction to the National DARE Parent Program).
The DARE program is very active in the schools of our youths, and also provide a great deal of information to the parents of these students. When I was going through the program as an elementary student, papers were sent home with the students for parents to read over. Sometimes papers were handed out for the parents to sign and return. The dare classroom is set up like normal classroom curriculum. There are achievements along the way, assignments must be completed, and a graduation ceremony...

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