Lauren Wilson, a Derby North Middle School student, said she was shocked to be announced as the statewide winner of the D.A.R.E. essay contest.
Lauren Wilson says she would have entered an essay contest for the statewide D.A.R.E. program even if it hadn’t been a requirement for her fifth-grade class at El Paso Elementary School.
“I would have done that one for choice. Especially something like that, for a good cause,” Lauren said.
Her enthusiasm paid off.
At a recent ceremony in Manhattan, Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt presented Lauren as winner of the contest.
“I was shocked,” Lauren said. “I was really nervous that day. All my friends had my back. It was really crazy to hear my name.”
For her efforts, Lauren received a plaque and $100. Plus, of course, bragging rights.
Matt Liston, district safety security officer, said every student who participates in D.A.R.E. program nationally must complete an essay to graduate from the program. Liston served as the Derby Public Department’s school resource officer and D.A.R.E. supervisor until this past May.
Each school that participates in the program sent in a winning essay, “and her essay was selected from all fifth-graders in Kansas,” Liston said.
The D.A.R.E. program helps teach students to recognize and resist peer pressure to experiment with tobacco, alcohol and other drugs.
“One of the things that we teach in D.A.R.E. now is define, assess, respond and evaluate,” Liston said. “It’s just a process to help them make decisions.”
Lauren, who will be attending Derby North Middle School, said the program helps “teach us something important that is coming up in our future.”
She likes writing and “took her time on the essay,” she said.
“I made sure it was nice and edited a lot,” she said.
Lauren said she used the define, assess, respond and evaluate technique on a situation in her own life.
“I had to choose between playing a computer game with all my friends or to work on a project that was an important part of my grade at school,” Lauren said. “These steps let me take the emotion out of my decision-making and to do what was best for myself. I finished the project and then had fun with my friends. That is one of the things that D.A.R.E. teaches and can be used in any situation. But the program is so much more than that. It could be life-threatening decisions as well. Do I take the drugs offered by people at a party or do I listen to friends and drink the alcohol? No, I define the situation, I assess what will be best for me and the choices available, I respond with my choice and I look back and evaluate the situation and see what I can change or do better in the future.”
Lauren’s mother, Kim, is a teacher at El Paso, and her father, Marc, is a retired officer with the Derby Police Department.
“I knew the gist of what the program was, but I learned a lot from Lauren because she got in there and learned the nuts and bolts of the program,” Marc Wilson said. “She actually taught me a lot about it.”
From Derby Informer
D.A.R.E. America is accepting nominations for the 2020 Awards:
- D.A.R.E. Law Enforcement Executive of the Year,
- Daryl F. Gates D.A.R.E. Lifetime Achievement,
- D.A.R.E. Officer of the Year, and
- D.A.R.E. Educator of the Year.
Recipients of these prestigious awards…
Each year, D.A.R.E. America awards one member of its Youth Advocacy Board a $20,000 college scholarship. This year, New Jersey Youth Advocacy Board (YAB) member Julia Manning was named the recipient of the 2019 D.A.R.E. America Louis ‘Skip’ Miller National Scholarship...
"I am humbled and flattered to receive the D.A.R.E. Lifetime Graduate Award. Safety and making good decisions will follow through with our students for their entire lives. Good decision making results in positive self-esteem and an attitude (with the) ability to make...
A school-wide celebration was held last week in honor of Osage Middle School student Ashley Muhs, who won the 2018-19 state D.A.R.E. essay contest. Muhs, who is a seventh-grader this fall, wasn’t able to attend the state D.A.R.E. convention over the summer to read her winning essay aloud…
Deputy Brian Ruckstuhl is this year’s Larry R. Cox D.A.R.E Officer of the Year. “I love doing what I’m doing. I love coming here to Otsego. Couldn’t imagine being anywhere else,” said Ruckstuhl. The D.A.R.E officer has been teaching D.A.R.E classes at Otsego Local Schools for 6 years…
TOPEKA, Kan. (KSNT) – A fifth-grade student from El Paso Elementary School has been named the winner of the D.A.R.E essay contest, according to Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt. Lauren Wilson, a 5th-grade student from Derby Kansas, participated in the Derby...
TAZEWELL COUNTY, VA (WOAY) – Deputy Landon Hieatt of the Tazewell County Sheriff’s Office was recognized at the 2019 Virginia School Safety Training Forum in Hampton, Virginia on Wednesday, July 31, 2019, as the recipient of the Bentowski-Eanes Virginia D.A.R.E....
D.A.R.E. International President & Chief Executive Officer, Mr. Francisco X. Pegueros, & the “D.A.R.E. Kids” with Sheriff Lopey. Lopey received the 2019 D.A.R.E. International Law Enforcement Executive of the Year Award, presented on June 25 at the 32nd D.A.R.E. International Annual Training Conference in Phoenix, Ariz…
Talbot’s own singing police officer John Coleman has been named the Maryland State D.A.R.E. Officer of the Year. Coleman has guided thousands of Talbot County schoolchildren in Drug Abuse Resistance Education (D.A.R.E.) during his varied 31-year career in law enforcement…
Copyright © 2020 D.A.R.E. America. All Rights Reserved.
Copyright © 2020 D.A.R.E. America.
All Rights Reserved.