Paulding Elementary D.A.R.E. Graduation on Tuesday, January 31, 2023

Paulding Elementary 2023 D.A.R.E. program essay winners: Paxxton Wesley, Ella Zimmerman, Anna Baughman, Abisai Escobar, Rosie Estrada, Braelynn Averesch, Andros Isidoro, Sophia Speelman

D.A.R.E. program in Paulding County is going strong with a new Deputy at the helm, Deputy Rich Phelan. In January he completed the 12 week coursework with the Antwerp Elementary 5th graders. This past week, he graduated the 5th grade class of Paulding Elementary.

D.A.R.E. stands for Drug Abuse Resistance Education and began in 1983 in Los Angeles, CA. From its origination, the D.A.R.E. program has evolved from a non-interactive to an interactive curriculum for upper elementary age children and into high school.

Paulding students were introduced to the REAL concept — Refuse, Explain, Avoid, and Leave. These strategies are excellent tools to use to make objective decisions and communicate those decisions to their peers in a healthy way. After the 12 weeks of lessons, the students graduate from the D.A.R.E. program. To graduate all the students were required to do was participate in class and in their homework assignments each week, one of which was the Essay.

Deputy Phelan chose eight student essays to be read at the graduation ceremony that was attended by the students, teachers, as well as family and friends of the students. These essay winners received medallions and a certificate to acknowledge their efforts. The student essays that were read that day are authored by the following: Paxxton Wesley, Ella Zimmerman, Anna Baughman, Abisai Escobar, Rosie Estrada, Braelynn Averesch, Andros Isidoro, Sophia Speelman

Deputy Phelan thanked many for the success of the program including the students for their enthusiastic participation as well as being respectful and funny. The fifth grade teachers in turn thanked Deputy Phelan for his dedication to the students’ edification on the subject of drug and alcohol addictions.

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