The Calverton School D.A.R.E. Graduation
Students at The Calverton School celebrated their D.A.R.E. graduation on November 11, 2002, culminating a 10-week long program that the fifth-graders completed in the semester. The course has been taught in the Huntingtown, Maryland school for more than 12 years.

Children in elementary, middle, and high school classrooms throughout the country today face a multitude of high-risk circumstances including the temptation to use drugs and alcohol, violence, bullying, and internet safety, not to mention the fear of school violence.

The D.A.R.E. program teaches students decision-making skills that equip them to lead safe and healthy lives. Lessons include the dangers of drug abuse, how to resist and refuse peer pressure, and how to take a stand against bullying. The D.A.R.E. program is designed to boost students’ social skills, enhance self-esteem, and provide tools to help them make responsible decisions.

As a graduation requirement, the fifth graders are asked to write an essay describing what they have learned from the D.A.R.E. program. The essays are often narratives of personal experiences of bullying or peer pressure and explain how the students will use or have used the D.A.R.E. Decision Making Model to overcome those challenges. There were three D.A.R.E. essay winners from this class. Essay winners Jonah, Camila, and Braden read their essays aloud to the attendees, sharing the personal impact that D.A.R.E. had on them.

During the graduation ceremony, Deputy Clas held a brief overview of the program with the students telling their parents and guests about what they learned. Deputy Clas tossed a neon green koosh ball to his students as they covered a few health effects of alcohol and tobacco, explained the D.A.R.E. Decision-Making Model, and the concept of risks and consequences.

Deputy Clas shared with the audience that the class average for the pre-test score was 69% and that they learned a lot during the program, bringing the class average for the post-test to 99%. Mr. Jamey Hein, the Head of the School, and Mrs. Heidi Merryman, Head of the Lower School, at the graduation both encouraged the students to continue to use the skills they learned in D.A.R.E.

Calvert County Sheriff’s Office teaches the program to more than 800 students in seven different schools during the school year. Funding for the D.A.R.E. program is typically provided in part through fundraisers and grants. In Maryland, the student workbooks are provided through the State D.A.R.E. Coordinator’s Office.

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Copyright © 2022 D.A.R.E. America.
All Rights Reserved.