Select Page

Seabrook Middle School fifth-graders celebrated the completion of the school’s Drug Abuse Resistance Education program at a graduation event. Each student was required to write an essay that included a personal commitment to avoid drugs, tobacco, alcohol and violence. Photo by Kiki Evans/Seacoastonline.

SEABROOK — Seabrook Middle School’s fifth-graders shared their promise to remain drug free, violence free, and healthy at the school’s 28th annual D.A.R.E. graduation ceremony last week.

The graduation was the culmination of a ten-week program led by Seabrook School Resource Officer James Deshaies.

“I look forward to teaching the program every year,” Deshaies said.

Deshaies has led Seabrook’s D.A.R.E. program for the past 25 years of his 28 years in law enforcement. He said he enjoys going into the fifth-grade classes each Friday and getting to know the students. “It’s always a little sad when it comes to an end each year,” he said.

The goal of D.A.R.E., or “Drug Abuse Resistance Education,” is to teach students about self esteem, peer pressure, and how to remain free of drugs and violence. The nationwide substance abuse prevention education program began in 1983 in Los Angeles. Seabrook School District adopted the program in 1988.

“I think everything that we can do to influence kids in a positive direction, we need to do,” said Principal Les Shepard.

Deshaies led the event by sharing information about the program and introducing the fifth-grade teaching team, Shepard and Assistant Principal Cynthia Fagan.

Shepard thanked the parents and families for coming to the ceremony and showing their support. “Your presence here tonight sends your children a powerful message about how much you care,” Shepard said.

Deshaies told the audience that after they have learned about alcohol, tobacco, and bullying, each fifth-grade student in the D.A.R.E. program is required to write an essay, called a “Personal Commitment,” that is judged by a panel of experts. The essays include facts the students learned in the program, information about the D.A.R.E. Decision-Making Model, and their commitment to remain free of tobacco, alcohol, drugs and violence.

Deshaies commended the students’ essays and said the panel needed nine days to choose eight out of 71 student essays that would be read aloud at the graduation event.

“They took a look at the first essay and thought, ‘Well this is definitely going to be one of the finalists,’ and then looked at the next essay and were impressed with that one, too, so it was a very difficult decision,” Deshaies said. He introduced the students as they stood to read their personal commitments to the audience.

Julianna Falzarano said the program taught her about good and bad risks and assessing consequences. “I had to take a risk to try out for a soccer team, and guess what, I made it,” she said. “That was a positive consequence.”

Alana Nielsen explained the D.A.R.E. Decision-Making Model is about evaluating choices. “The best way to stay away from drugs and alcohol in my opinion might be to have a large group of friends that outnumber a dealer,” she added.

Slade Rice said he believes that people who are bullied may be too afraid to report incidents of bullying. He said victims should be able to report bullying anonymously. “I’m glad I had D.A.R.E.,” he said. “It taught me a lot.”

“I’m excited to hear from the students about their personal commitments, and I really like that they got to develop a relationship with officer Dehshaies,” said Fagan.

Parents shared Fagan’s accolades for the D.A.R.E. program. “I think it’s very helpful with keeping them on the right path and giving them the tools to make their own decisions and not just follow the crowd,” said parent Dyan Kaplan.

Deshaies concluded by telling the audience that the students will face choices over the next few years. “It’s where their support system comes into play,” he said. “I look around this audience and see the people that are the support system for these kids.”

Deshaies said he will continue working with the students throughout their middle school years. “You’re going to make the right choices,” he told them. “I’m proud of you.”

From seacoastonline.com

Munster Police Honor D.A.R.E. Graduates

Munster Police Honor D.A.R.E. Graduates

The Munster Police Department’s Drug Abuse Resistance Education (D.A.R.E.) Program has been presented to Munster students for over thirty years. The police department recently honored this semester’s approximately 275 D.A.R.E. graduates at Eads Elementary School…

D.A.R.E. Officers Thinking “Outside the Box”

D.A.R.E. Officers Thinking “Outside the Box”

Photo: D.A.R.E. Officer Steve Petroski of the Exeter Police Department delivering a message to his students on how to be safe and responsible.
New Hampshire State D.A.R.E. Coordinator Richard J. Perreault III said, “I have been in touch with several D.A.R.E. Officers…

170 Graduate from D.A.R.E.

170 Graduate from D.A.R.E.

Skaha Lake Middle School Grade 6 student Kai Godfrey presented his D.A.R.E. essay to parents, teachers and his entire grade Wednesday morning at the D.A.R.E. graduation. Approximately 170 Skaha Lake Middle School students graduated from the Drug Abuse Resistance...

Sixth-Graders Complete D.A.R.E. Program

Sixth-Graders Complete D.A.R.E. Program

Drug Abuse Resistance Education officers Gary Warner, Department of the Army Police, and Spc. Rachel Ingram, 500th Military Police Detachment, Special Troops Battalion, listen to MacArthur Elementary School sixth-grader Michelle Dillard read her D.A.R.E. essay during...

D.A.R.E. Graduates: 149 Watford City 5th Graders Make History

D.A.R.E. Graduates: 149 Watford City 5th Graders Make History

149 Watford City fifth-graders made history Thursday. After 15 weeks, they are the first class to graduate from its D.A.R.E. program. “I’m really proud of the 149 kids we had graduate today,” said Sgt. Jeffrey Jensen, school resource officer. This program might be a...

30th Annual D.A.R.E. Culmination Celebrated at Corpus Christi School

30th Annual D.A.R.E. Culmination Celebrated at Corpus Christi School

HASBROUCK HEIGHTS, NJ – Fifth-graders at Corpus Christi School have been participating in D.A.R.E., a once-a-week anti-drug program led by Det. Sgt. Alan Baker over the past school year. The annual program finished with the culmination, or graduation on…

D.A.R.E. – Teaches Kids to Make Smart Choices

D.A.R.E. – Teaches Kids to Make Smart Choices

FALLSBURG — Back in 1983, a Los Angeles school district created a partnership with the Los Angeles Police Department to create a drug resistance education program for students. Based upon the science of avoidance at the time, the program taught about specific drugs…

Laurel Police Dept. Holds D.A.R.E. Graduation Ceremony

Laurel Police Dept. Holds D.A.R.E. Graduation Ceremony

LAUREL, Miss. (WDAM) - The Laurel Police Department held its annual D.A.R.E. graduation ceremony on Friday in the gym of Laurel Middle School. More than 200 students took part in the event where they learned about the dangers of drugs, tobacco and alcohol. They also...

Copyright © 2020 D.A.R.E. America. All Rights Reserved.

Copyright © 2020 D.A.R.E. America.
All Rights Reserved.