Abuse Resistance Education (D.A.R.E.) is a validated,
copyrighted, comprehensive drug and violence prevention
education program for children in kindergarten through 12th
grade. There is a parent-training program available for adults
in addition to the school-based curricula. D.A.R.E.
represents a collaborative effort between school and law
enforcement personnel. D.A.R.E. America nationally coordinates
the program, with input received from state and local agencies
a cooperative program by the Virginia
Department of State Police, the Virginia Department of Education
and local law enforcement agencies and school divisions.
D.A.R.E.'s primary mission
is to provide children with the
information and skills they need to live drug-and-violence-free
The mission is to equip kids with the tools that will enable
them to avoid negative influences and instead, allow them to
focus on their strengths and potential. And, that's exactly what
D.A.R.E. is designed to do.
Additionally, it establishes positive relationships between
students and law enforcement, teachers, parents, and other
community leaders. Every youngster should have the opportunity
to grow-up healthy, safe, secure, and equipped with the skills
needed to succeed in life. Contemporary America, however, is
rampant with challenges that could keep children from a positive
D.A.R.E. (Drug Abuse Resistance Education) is a collaborative
program in which local law enforcement and local schools join
together to educate students about the personal and social
consequences of substance abuse and violence.
The D.A.R.E. curricula is designed to be delivered sequentially
from grades K-12. First developed in 1983, D.A.R.E. has
undergone multiple revisions as research findings increased
knowledge of effective substance abuse prevention among
Charlie Parsons, President and CEO of
D.A.R.E. America, a 501 (c) (3) non-profit organization.
Millions of U.S. children in more than 300,000 classrooms in
10,000 communities in all 50 states will benefit from D.A.R.E.
this year. D.A.R.E. also benefits millions of children in 43
other countries. Additionally, all Department of Defense Schools
worldwide and all U.S. Territories have D.A.R.E. programs in
IT IS A NEW D.A.R.E. Today’s D.A.R.E. may not be the D.A.R.E.
with which you are familiar. Since 2003, D.A.R.E. America has
engaged in a total organizational renewal. The new D.A.R.E. K‐12
curricula focus upon the abuse of gateway drugs (tobacco,
alcohol, marijuana and inhalants). The program offers a
preventive strategy to enhance protective factors ‐
especially bonding to family, school and community ‐
which research has shown to foster development of resiliency in
students who may be at risk for substance abuse or other problem
behaviors. The program employs the use of the D.A.R.E. decision
making model in which students are provided skills to use in
developing and assessing choices they make in life. Students
build skills to:
Define problems and challenges
Assess available choices
Respond by making a choice
Evaluate their decisions
The D.A.R.E. Instructor, using techniques of facilitation – gone
are the days of the didactic lecture – guides students as they
work in small cooperative learning groups using the D.A.R.E.
decision making model to apply to real life situations.
The new D.A.R.E. elementary curriculum has been reduced to 10
lessons and a menu of enhancement lessons implemented. The
enhancement lessons provide local jurisdictions the ability to
customize their D.A.R.E. program to meet identified needs. Many
enhancement lessons will be developed, among those currently
offered are: gangs, methamphetamines, internet safety, bullying
and cyber bullying. The most recent addition is the D.A.R.E.
Rx/OTC (prescription/ over‐the‐counter)
Drug abuse materials.
The NEW K-12 D.A.R.E. curricula lessons focus on:
· Strong “NO USE” message
· Immediate consequences
· Normative beliefs
· Consequential thinking
· Self-management skills
· Voluntary commitment
· Credible presenter
· Character Education
· Interactive participatory learning
· Social resistance skills
· Violence prevention
· Set curriculum and quality training
More than 50,000 local law enforcement officers are certified to
teach the D.A.R.E. program.
D.A.R.E. is not a government program although it has enjoyed
Administration support. Since its inception, funding for D.A.R.E.
student educational materials and instructors training is
provided by D.A.R.E. America, a non-profit organization. Less
than one percent of D.A.R.E. America’s budget comes from federal
D.A.R.E. is reviewed annually by the D.A.R.E. Scientific
Advisory Board, the D.A.R.E. America Law Enforcement Advisory
Board, D.A.R.E. officers, school and municipal administrators.
Research findings and increased knowledge of effective
anti-drug, anti-violence, and anti-substance abuse prevention is
continually evaluated for incorporation into curricula.