Select Page

Drug Abuse Resistance Education, better known as D.A.R.E., plans to launch an opioid-use prevention lesson program at the beginning of 2018.

The widely known anti-drug abuse education program that gained momentum in the 1980s and 1990s will be reviewing educational materials produced by health education nonprofit WiRED International. If the materials meet D.A.R.E. standards, they will be distributed to schools across the country next year.

The move comes alongside the startling rise of opioid abuse, overdoses, and deaths. Opioid deaths have become so frequent that they’re shortening overall life expectancy in the United States, and fatal fentanyl overdoses have increased exponentially within three short years in some of America’s largest cities.

The crisis has caught the attention of the White House. President Donald Trump created a commission to combat opioid abuse and suggested that he could declare a state of emergency on the issue.

However, D.A.R.E. staff told IJR that they no longer receive much federal funding. D.A.R.E.’s large sums of federal funding from the Office of Juvenile Justice Drug Prevention within the Department of Justice dried up 10 years ago.

Attorney General Jeff Sessions, speaking at D.A.R.E.’s annual training conference in July, told the crowd that they had the support of the president, and he recognized the program’s success during the drug epidemic of the 1970s and 80s.

“I firmly believe that your work saves lives,” he said. “No doubt about it, it helped turn the tide.”

D.A.R.E. has faced increased scrutiny in recent years. Several studies questioned the program’s effectiveness and determined students in the program were just as likely to use drugs as those not enrolled.

Today’s curriculum is quite different, D.A.R.E. staff says.

The new program, which has been commended by the United States Surgeon General’s office, favors decision-making models over the old-school “just say no” approach. This new curriculum reaches about 1.5 million students each year.

“It’s not a [police] officer up there lecturing students. It is really an interactive program,” Richard Mahan, the director of communications for D.A.R.E. told IJR. “And while it still focuses on drugs, it is really focused primarily on providing students, young people, with the skills to make healthy and safe decisions.”

Despite the president’s support, D.A.R.E. hasn’t received any specific financial boosts from the Trump administration or federal agencies.

Mahan, who said D.A.R.E. is always open to exploring federal grants, believes a little bit of funding goes a long way.

“Ten or 20 more trainings equal educating hundreds of thousands of kids.”

From Independent Journal Review.

D.A.R.E. Launches New High School Curriculum

myPlaybook: Core is a four-lesson curriculum designed for delivery to High School Students, ideally in 9th or 10th grade. The lesson content is aligned with D.A.R.E. Elementary and Middle school program concepts, continuing the focus on understanding risk behavior…

D.A.R.E. Responds to Vaping Crisis with New Enhancement Lesson

Vaping nicotine nearly doubled among high school seniors from 11 percent in 2017 to 20.9 percent in 2018. More than 1 in 10 eighth graders (10.9 percent) say they vaped nicotine in the past year, and use is up significantly in virtually all vaping measures among…

3 Big Prevention Ideas to Keep Young People Safe and Healthy

Navigating teen life while confronted with current issues like vaping, teen suicide, social media bullying, and illicit drugs, including today’s opioid epidemic, mean young people today must make critical choices at an early age. The hopeful news is communities that...

D.A.R.E. Isn’t Just About Drugs

Photo: D.A.R.E. Officer and Vermilion County Sheriff’s Deputy Jay Miller in his office at the Public Safety Building.
Miller’s duties take to several schools in the county. Parents can use the extra assistance when it comes to helping their children make right decisions…

D.A.R.E. in 2019 – It’s Science & Evidence-Based Curricula

Read an article about D.A.R.E. by Richard Clayton, Ph.D., former Chair of Health Education and Health Promotion in the College of Public Health at the University of Kentucky. For more than 20 years, he was the director of the federally funded Center for Prevention Research

 
 
 
 
 
 

Purchase D.A.R.E. Merchandise & Workbooks