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Gazelle Elementary School D.A.R.E. graduates learned about how to make responsible choices as well as how to combat bullying during the program, which is being provided through a partnership with the Siskiyou County Sheriff’s Office and Behavioral Health Services.

Taught by the Siskiyou County Sheriff Office’s D.A.R.E. Instructor Reserve Deputy Jim Jacobsen, students also learned how to deal with strangers and potential threats inside and outside school campuses.

Classes at Gazelle Elementary School and Scott Valley Christian Academy graduated from the D.A.R.E. program, where they learned to resist the temptation to use alcohol, tobacco products and illicit drugs, as well as how to respond to bullying.

Taught by the Siskiyou County Sheriff Office’s D.A.R.E. Instructor Reserve Deputy Jim Jacobsen, students also learned how to deal with strangers and potential threats inside and outside school campuses.

“D.A.R.E. prevention education is one of the most important things a law enforcement agency can do to equip our kids with information so they can make an informed and better decision when it comes to the use of alcohol, tobacco, illegal drugs, and other harmful substances,” said Siskiyou County Sheriff Jon Lopey. “I firmly believe the instruction on how to deal with bullying and the lesson to treat everyone with dignity and respect and to intervene in such situations in school is also a very, very important topic.”

D.A.R.E. is funded with a cooperative agreement between Siskiyou County’s Behavioral Health Services, Lopey explained. A partner mentor, BHS Substance Use Disorder Prevention Coordinator John Crovelle often attends D.A.R.E. graduations and is engaged in drug and alcohol prevention educational efforts such as “Keeping it Real,” and “Athlete Committed,” which are primarily taught at the high school levels.

It is a tremendous thing to cover a wide variety of age groups in our Siskiyou County schools and we have a great partnership with John and BHS.”

Also joining graduation ceremonies is BHS Substance Use Disorder and AOD Administrator Toby Reusze.

“The support we are getting from our schools is phenomenal and the funding mechanism to sustain this program this and next school year will be sustained,” said Reusze. “We are seeing positive results and I agree, prevention is a key strategy we must pursue to lower the incidence of substance abuse, especially involving adolescents in all Siskiyou County communities.

During the 2018-19 school year, Jacobsen provided D.A.R.E. instruction to Grenada, Big Springs, Delphic, Montague, Hornbrook, Gazelle, and Butte Valley Elementary Schools.

Dunsmuir Elementary School is currently receiving D.A.R.E. instruction and other schools are planned before the school year is over and some classes will be conducted during summer school, said Lopey. Scott Valley Christian Academy recently graduated a class as well.

Any school interested in D.A.R.E. classes should contact Jacobsen at (530) 842-8300. By the end of the school year nearly 1,000 students are projected to have graduated or have received D.A.R.E. instruction in the SCSO-BHS partnership program.

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