The MPD Drug Abuse Resistance Education (D.A.R.E.) Program is a substance abuse prevention education program designed to equip elementary school children with skills for resisting peer pressure to experiment with tobacco, drugs, alcohol and to engage in gangs or criminal activity.
D.A.R.E. was developed in 1983 by the Los Angeles Police Department and Los Angeles Unified School District. It uses uniformed officers to teach a formal curriculum to students in a classroom setting. Officer Darin Wilkins is the D.A.R.E. instructor for the 5th graders in the Mesquite area and can be contacted at Hughes Middle School (346-3250). Click on the link to the right to be redirected to the Official D.A.R.E. Website.
D.A.R.E. lesson plans focus on five major areas:
1. Provide accurate information about tobacco, alcohol and drugs
2. Teach students decision-making skills
3. Show students how to resist peer pressure
4. Give students ideas for alternatives to drug use
5. Resist gangs and criminal activity
One precept of the D.A.R.E. program is that elementary school children lack sufficient social skills to resist peer pressure and say NO to drugs. Instructors do not use scare tactics of traditional approaches that focus on the dangers of drug use. Instead, they work with the children to raise their self-esteem, to teach them how to make decisions on their own, and to help them identify positive alternatives to drugs.
KEY PROGRAM ELEMENTS
D.A.R.E. is a joint effort by the police, school, and parents, all three working together to help our children make the right choice concerning drug use. One unique feature of D.A.R.E. is the use of police officers as instructors. D.A.R.E. officers are assigned full time to a school. The officers, who are selected because of their human relations and communications skills, are trained to present a special 10-lesson instruction unit.
Please join with us, and D.A.R.E., to keep our kids off drugs and out of gangs.
TIPS FOR PARENTS
• Establish family rules that make use of drugs *non-negotiable.*
• Educate yourself about drugs so you can talk informatively with your children and answer their questions.
• Because peer pressure is a major factor in teen drug use and gangs, know your children*s friends.
• Talk with other parents. Try to establish uniform rules that make access to drugs harder, such as curfews and the amount of spending money your children receive.• If a problem exists get help! Don't say, "NOT MY CHILD."