Crack, Mary Jane, yayo, and coke. Everybody knows what these names are and many have experienced them. These are just a few names for the many kinds of illegal drugs. If you thing drugs just appeared on the scene recently you dead wrong. Drugs have been here since the beginning of the very first civilizations. It caused the Opium War of ancient China and has also caused hundreds of millions of murders involving the transfer of drugs.

Drugs are anything but bias hence they " re colorblind. They see no color nor age and think nothing about social status or where you live. You can go from a homeless man shooting up in the gutter of an alley to a corporate CEO living in the richest part town addicted to the same drug. Drugs have been here for hundreds of years and will really never be gone. Drugs are so destruct ful it not only affects the user, but also every person that individual knows and comes into contact with.

But, the worst part about drugs is that the majority of drug users are the youth of America. That's when a program called DARE stepped in to educate the youth of America about the dangers of drug use. DARE is a program that doesn't wait until an individual is addicted by rather it teaches children at the youngest age to stay away from drugs. It's a corporation that doesn't work for the money but rather the pleasure of seeing results in the decrease of drug use in adolescences. The DARE program is not just something striving for an honorable goal, but a program that actually works. DARE has produce great results and will only get better in the years to come. D.A.R.E. (Drug Abuse Resistance Education) is a program put together by certified people whom share the same goal.

These people consist of law enforcement officers, teachers, students, and community members. Their goal is to bring the D.A.R.E. educational program into the classroom in order to help the youth be more aware of the pressures that influence them to experiment with alcohol, tobacco, marijuana, inhalants, or other drugs. The program offers strategies to help the kids stay away from these pressures that many youths experience in their upbringing. Some of the results that D.A. RE. tries to accomplish or focus on with youths are self-esteem, decision-making, conflict resolution, sense of purpose, and development of social competence, communication skills, and also alternate activities to drug abuse such as sports or other destructive programs equilivant to D.A.R.E. The DARE program is a very renowned and widely respected program that is organized and taught by trained law officials who put together seventeen 45 to 60 minute lessons that are integrated into other instruction by the teacher of that class. DARE focuses heavily on the 5 and 6 grade where one specially trained officer is assigned to a school one day for a trimester. During the presentation the classroom teacher holds an important role in managing the classroom while the DARE representative is conducting the lesson, which includes great volunteer participation.

The DARE program can be taught as individual lessons or can be incorporated in school courses such as language arts, health, social studies, science, and other appropriate subjects dealing with drug use. One of the many areas that DARE is present is the city of San Antonio and Bexar County where DARE is making a big impact on middle and high school students. Bexar County Sheriff Ralph Lopez stated", I believe DARE to be a viable asset in our efforts to reduce juvenile and adult drug related and violent crimes". In the 2002-2003 school year in Bexar County, DARE was exposed to 8,196 5th grade students and 34,388 kindergarten through 4th grade students in 77 elementary schools and in 10 out of 12 school districts.

For the 2003-2004 school year the DARE Program present in Bexar will add three new elementary schools making the total one-hundred to its already existing program in addition to sixteen middle / junior high schools. This is extremely significant because this will be the very first time in history of the DARE program in Bexar County that the middle / junior high school program has been implemented. Even though DARE is highly respected it has occasionally been criticized by some local and national institutions on the effectiveness of the program. Despite this criticism, DARE has been proven through surveys, evaluations, and many studies to be very effective. I believe that this program is highly effective because of the results given in individual studies and surveys. I feel that if this program is producing positive results it shouldn't be questioned or criticized on a local or national level.

DARE has proven it's effectiveness over and over again and in my personal opinion it wont stop making positive results. If a program dedicated to the absence of drug use is bringing in results with adolescence and young adults it shouldn't be questioned, but appreciated which gives me a solid argument towards DARE critics. My argument is that DARE does indeed work and that people who doubt this program should really examine the statistics of students who have gone through the program. There are numerous documents on how DARE has given positive results, but in turn there are not solid evidence and research that can be used to discredit the DARE Program. The majority of the individuals who question the effectiveness of DARE are too interested in the money spent rather in the results that comes out of the program.

Politicians and people of other fields of work including parents shouldn't discredit a program with such a positive goal if they are not trained in researching how effective a program is. There are numerous officials in the field of law who truly believe in this program and would allow DARE to represent them which demonstrates once again the trust that highly respected individuals have with this program. If teachers, governors, principals, sheriffs, and parents believe that this program is good for child there shouldn't be any thoughts of getting rid of it because it costs too much money to keep it running. So, in saying that the results speak for themselves and DARE shouldn't spend it's time defending itself, but concentrating on expanding it's program in different areas. When you " re dealing with a program such has DARE it's at most times hard to look down or discredit it. In one hand if you rid the world of DARE you save a little money, but the little chance that you had to keep more youths away from drugs is completely out the door.

And, on the other hand you help the DARE Program expand its boundaries and receive back those chances of preventing a kid from beginning the use of drugs. If a critic of DARE ask me if I thought money spent on the program could be spent on other things in the school system I would quickly reply, "YES". But, I would then say you couldn't spend money on anything better. DARE is not a nationwide program for nothing. It's an organization fighting for the health of all Americans to prevent them in the start of drug use and keeping them on the right track to living a successful and healthy life.

It's a program that schools in America shouldn't be rid of but in turn should be integrated in school curriculums. DARE is a program that actually works and produces results that will do nothing but get better in the years to come. Dare Mission Statement... "Survey Results". Pasadena Police DARE Program. 2002.

PISS Department Research and Evaluation. Apr. 2002. "The Purpose". Dare Information.