Drug Abuse Resistance Education, (D.A.R.E.), is a drug prevention program in which uniformed Police Officers go into fifth grade classrooms to teach students the life skills they need to avoid involvement with drugs, alcohol, violence, and bullying. D.A.R.E. was founded by the Los Angeles Police Department in 1983. The program was so successful in L.A. that it began spreading to other communities and countries.
Today, D.A.R.E. is being taught in all 50 states and 48 countries. D.A.R.E. is taught in more than 300,000 classrooms in the US. In Ormond Beach, D.A.R.E. is a collaborative effort between the Ormond Beach Police Department, the Volusia County School Board and several local private schools. D.A.R.E. was introduced in Ormond Beach in 1992, by Chief Patterson (Retired). This year 700 students in the fifth grade will go through the program.
D.A.R.E lessons address such topics as: drug & alcohol use and misuse, consequences of drug & alcohol use, decision making and risk taking, resistance techniques, alternatives to drug & alcohol use, role modeling and anti bullying. In addition to helping students resist unwanted pressure. D.A.R.E. contributed to greater respect for Police Officers, improved study habits and grades, and decreased violence.
Results from a research study by Joseph F. Donnermeyer, Ph.D., of Ohio State University, found that D.A.R.E. does make a positive difference. In the study, 3,150 students participated in this statewide assessment. The study found that D.A.R.E. did influence students' attitudes and behaviors about substance use. All in all, D.A.R.E. reduced substance use, increased resistance to peer pressure, encouraged communication with parents and other responsible adults, and increased positive views of the police.
Prevention education programs such as D.A.R.E. have a major role in teaching the dangers and consequences of substance abuse. Like other prevention efforts, D.A.R.E plays an important role in supporting families, positive peer groups, and communities in order to raise healthy, responsible youth.
D.A.R.E in Ormond Beach has been supported by community service groups and donations. D.A.R.E is a model of "Community-Based Policing" at its best. The program stimulates positive interaction between virtually all members of our community.