Answers to Four Common Questions About D.A.R.E. Curricula
IS D.A.R.E. STILL AROUND?
Not only is D.A.R.E. still around, it’s growing with education programs in every state in America and 50+ other countries. Last year alone, more than 80 communities throughout the United States launched a new D.A.R.E. program taught by officers trained during one of last year’s 28 two-week, intensive D.A.R.E. training courses which collectively graduated 800 new D.A.R.E. officers. Thirty-plus more D.A.R.E. officer trainings are being scheduled in 2019.
I HEARD D.A.R.E. DOESN’T WORK?
Today’s D.A.R.E. curricula work! D.A.R.E. has partnered with prestigious educational institutions to adapt curricula proven to be effective. The D.A.R.E. keepin’ it REAL (kiR) middle school curriculum was developed by Pennsylvania State and Arizona State Universities with funding provided by the National Institute on Drug Abuse. The two high school curriculums were developed by Rutgers University and the University of North Carolina, Greensboro respectively. These curricula have been proven effective through rigorous scientific evaluations. The D.A.R.E. kiR elementary curriculum is currently the subject of rigorous scientific evaluation, results of a preliminary evaluation of the curriculum conducted by Chapman University showed positive outcomes.
IS D.A.R.E. CURRICULA EVIDENCE-BASED?
YES…D.A.R.E. curricula are science and evidence-based. Multiple studies have been conducted that have established that the keepin’ it REAL elementary and middle school curricula are effective. When someone asks if D.A.R.E. is “evidence-based,” what do they mean? They mean is research available showing that the curriculum is effective in reducing outcomes such as drug use, bullying and other problem behaviors by improving the decision-making and other skills of those who were exposed to the lessons compared to those who were not? And, the answer is YES.
ARE D.A.R.E. CURRICULA RELEVANT AND STATE-OF-THE-ART?
D.A.R.E. offers the most comprehensive prevention curricula available for K-12 students anywhere. The curriculum meets multiple National Core Standards in the areas of Reading (Literature, Informational Text, and Foundational Skills), Writing and Speaking and Learning. The 10 lessons in D.A.R.E.’s keepin’ it REAL elementary curriculum are aligned with National Common Core 5th grade standards. D.A.R.E. curricula provide students the knowledge and skills to make good decisions for safe and healthy living. D.A.R.E.’s keepin’ it REAL elementary and middle-school curricula are based on Socio-Emotional Learning Theory which identifies basic skills and processes needed for healthy youth development. Beyond this, D.A.R.E.’s enhancement lessons include bullying, cyber security, a supplemental marijuana lesson, family talks, and the recently launched K-12 Opioid & & Prescription Drug Abuse Prevention lessons.