Pubdate: Thu, 08 Apr 2004
Source: Daily Herald (IL)
Copyright: 2004 The Daily Herald Company
Author:  Amy Boerema
Bookmark: (D.A.R.E.)
Bookmark: (Drug Education)


Lisle Police This Year Will Begin Reviewing Alternatives to the Drug Abuse 
Resistance Education Program.

Officials say they're generally pleased with the long-running anti-drug 
program, but will start to review other models to supplement or replace DARE.

Instructors currently teach the 17-week program to Lisle students in fifth 

"We're still continuing with it," Deputy Chief James Kosatka said 
Wednesday. "We haven't made any decisions. We're just exploring our options 
to see if we can make it even better."

The DARE program has received positive responses from students, parents and 
teachers, Chief Michael Damico said.

"The DARE program has served us very well, but we want to look nationally 
to see what else is being done," he said.

The department is trying to stay progressive and pro-active and wants to 
research any new options, he said.

Other area departments also are reviewing alternatives to DARE. The program 
has been criticized for being outdated and ineffective and last year lost 
its state funding.

Naperville, for example, is considering implementing an anti-drug program 
called Too Good for Drugs that focuses on making healthy choices and 
building character.

After reviewing options, Lisle may create its own curriculum, using parts 
of other programs, Damico said.

"We may come to the conclusion that DARE's (just fine)," DARE officer Cindy 
McNaney said.

The DARE curriculum for next year has been shortened to 10 weeks, with more 
interactive lessons, she said.

Having some type of drug-prevention program in the schools will remain a 
department priority, Damico said.

Lisle police also are looking to localize their drug focus in the 
enforcement area.

The department will leave the DuPage County Metropolitan Enforcement Group 
this year after being a charter member since 1985.

The organization is a county-wide drug unit funded in part by participating 
communities in DuPage.

Damico said the department wants to focus its drug-related efforts more on 
the community, rather than county-wide.
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