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Dare Essay Winners Present Works to Price City Council

By C.J. MCMANUS
Sun Advocate reporter

Otto DeGroff reads his Dare essay to the Price city council.

During the April 25 Price city council meeting essay winners from Creekview, Pinnacle Canyon Academy and Castle Heights Elementary presented their DARE essays to the council.

Essays were read by Jaycey Bruno of Creekview, Otto DeGroff of Castle Heights and Alexis Heugly of Pinnacle Canyon.

DARE is a police officer-led series of classroom lessons that teaches children form kindergarten through 12th grade how to resist peer pressure and live productive drug free lives, as reported by dare.com.

According to Price City Police Chief Alec Shilaos the nine week program is taught once a week to every fifth grader in the county and has become an invaluable part of curbing drug use among local youth.

The officers responsible for teaching at these school are Officers Shane Henrie, Brian Judd and Dave Wilkinson. The DARE (Drug Abuse Resistance Education) curriculum is designed to be taught by police officers whose training and experience give them the background needed to answer the sophisticated questions often posed by young students about drugs and crime. Prior to entering the DARE program officers undergo 80 hours of special training in areas such as child development, classroom management, teaching techniques and communication skills.

The Price city department reported that children are taught how do deal with peer pressure and the dangers of marijuana, tobacco, alcohol and inhalants.

One students essay stated that, "Drinking alcohol can make you act like Brittany Spears," she surmised that for that reason alone she planned to never drink alcohol.

DARE was founded in 1983 in Los Angeles and has proven so successful that it is now being implemented in 75 percent of our nation's school districts and in more than 43 countries around the world.

"It is a fun and worthwhile program," said Chief Shilaos. "And we plan to keep it in our schools."

Price City Mayor Joe Piccolo was particularly impressed with the students essays and with the police that instruct them.

"This community sees you as heroes for what you do and I see you that way as well,"concluded Piccolo.





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