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Background of D.A.R.E. Program

In January of 1983, Chief Daryl Gates of the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) approached the Superintendent of the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) expressing concern about the drug problems facing society. As a result of this meeting, a task force composed of LAPD and LAUSD personnel was appointed to develop a drug abuse prevention program for elementary children. This group created D.A.R.E. (Drug Abuse Resistance Education) that would be taught to 5th and 6th graders. D.A.R.E. eventually expanded its curriculum to include grades Kindergarten through High School.

8 Ways To Say No

Goals and Objectives of D.A.R.E.

The primary goal of the D.A.R.E. program is to prevent substance abuse among school age children. The D.A.R.E. program targets children at an age when they are most receptive to drug prevention education and before they are likely to have experimented with tobacco, alchohol, and other drugs. D.A.R.E. seeks to prevent adolescent substance abuse, thus reducing the demand for drugs.

The D.A.R.E. program curriculum focuses on the following objectives for student learning:

1. Provides the skills for recognizing and resisting social pressures to experiment with tobacco, alcohol, and other drugs.

2. Helps enhance self-esteem.

3. Teaches positive alternatives to substance abuse and other destructive behaviors.

4. Develops skills in risk-assessment, decision-making, and conflict resolution resolution.

5. Builds interpersonal and communication skills.

Center Street Grade School
Center Street Grade School

Fairfield's D.A.R.E. program started in 1989 with Harry Eckleberry as the first D.A.R.E. Officer. Officer Brent Maguire currently teaches the D.A.R.E. program each year to approximately 70 students at Center Street Grade School.

D.A.R.E. Curriculum

Center Street Grade School is visited once a week for 17 weeks during the school year. Lessons last 45 - 60 minutes and involve students in a variety of exercises both written and verbal. D.A.R.E. gives children skills to recognize and resist the subtle and overt pressures that cause them to experiment with drugs and alcohol.

Along with learning how to react when offered drugs, children learn about peer pressure, self-concept improvement, handling stress, value judgements and risks, as well as respect for the law, personal safety and the glamorization of drugs and alcohol in the media. At the conclusion of the semester, graduation ceremonies are held to honor students for the successful completion of the D.A.R.E. program.