The prevention of substance abuse is a major concern in our community, as it is anywhere in the nation. Because drug use is beginning at an earlier age, elementary school children need to be educated in effectively resisting negative peer pressure. To address this problem, McLeod County Sheriff's Office, in cooperation with the school districts in the county, is committed offering the DARE program to the children in our community.
The DARE program is taught by a uniformed deputy who is specially trained in classroom presentation and management skills. The lessons are presented to fifth or sixth grade students. The lesson presentations involve lecture, group projects, workbook assignments and role playing activities. The curriculum includes such topics as how to say no to peers, self-esteem, assertiveness, resisting violence, consequences and making decisions skills.
Each student who successfully completes project DARE is awarded a certificate of achievement.
The McLeod County Sheriff's Office also conducts parent informational meetings in conjunction with project DARE. Parents are given the opportunity to learn more about the DARE lessons and get to know the DARE instructor. Information about illegal drugs is also shared with the parents. Discussions at parent's night meetings range from parenting skill tips to signs and symptoms of drug use.