DARE program valuable
I would like to respond to Jason Baker’s letter of Sept. 21, regarding the DARE program. I too had reservations about this program and did some research.
I too found the statistic that more children who have completed the program try drugs.
I also discovered that in the spirit of saving money, this program is offered only to certain schools in the districts, those deemed to be more at-risk.
These children have already been statistically identified as more likely to be drug users when they reach adulthood with or without exposure to the DARE program.
I have sat-in on the DARE lessons and I feel that this program is worth keeping.
DARE speaks to so much more than just drug use.
Police talk about peer pressure and ways to handle it, media pressure and marketing influence, and personal pressure and the importance of making informed decisions.
Students practice how to assert themselves forcefully but respectfully, while discouraging being judgmental to others.
These life skills have implications for many situations in their future.
The best part was the uniformed officer who presented the program in an open, fun atmosphere.
For many it is their first one-on-one interaction with the RCMP and it is a positive experience. The program is also optional and parents are advised before it starts.
To those parents who ask how will my child feel sitting out when all the other kids are doing DARE? I would suggest the program is then providing you with another opportunity to teach about peer pressure and personal assertion and just say no.