All three Maskwacis RCMP School Resource Officers have been busy teaching the DARE program to the following schools, Ermineskin Elementary, Nipisihkopahk Elementary, (Samson) and Mimiw Sakahikan (Pigeon Lake Reserve). Meskanahk Ka Nipa Wit School (Montana) and Kisipatnahk (Louis Bull) Schools have already successfully graduated from the program.
For those that are not familiar with the D.A.R.E. Program (Drug Abuse Resistance Education) it is an international education program that seeks to prevent the use of controlled drugs, membership in gangs and violent behavior. It focuses on a decision making model that the students can use if confronted with difficult situations.
The course consists of 10 sessions, aimed to provide children with knowledge, skills, and an opportunity to explore attitudes, to help them to make informed decisions, and to develop safe and healthy lifestyles.
Topics covered include, tobacco, alcohol, cannabis, volatile substances, bullying, and different types of pressure. Children look at normative beliefs about alcohol and tobacco. The sessions are interactive and provide a range of learning opportunities through individual activities, teamwork, discussions, story boards, and appropriate role playing. DARE is taught by specially trained police officers that take 80 hours of special training in areas such as child development, classroom management, teaching techniques, and communication skills.
Successful participants will receive a certificate, T- shirt, as well partake in a mini grad party. It is taught in the school during regular school hours.
Cst. Heath BEAR