Pubdate: Wed, 14 Mar 2007
Source: Winston-Salem Journal (NC)
Copyright: 2007 Piedmont Publishing Co. Inc.
Note: The Journal does not publish LTEs from writers outside its 
circulation area
Author: Sherry Youngquist
Bookmark: (D.A.R.E.)


YADKINVILLE -- The Yadkin County Sheriff's Office has hired enough 
deputies to staff the DARE program next school year.

Deputies who administer DARE, an anti-drug program, said that it was 
dropped this year mostly because of a shortage in school resource 
officers. "We were short one school resource officer at the start of 
the year. We had a couple of officers resign the middle of the school 
year," sheriff's Lt. Richard Nixon said.

Those positions are now filled. There are four school resource 
officers who work in Yadkin's eight elementary schools, and one 
officer is assigned to each of the two high schools.

As part of the program, deputies teach fifth-graders how to avoid 
drugs. DARE, or Drug Abuse Resistance Education, has been in Yadkin 
schools for 10 years, officials said.

The plan is to restart DARE in the fall, Nixon said. It was hoped 
that DARE would be made available this spring at the elementary 
schools, but deputies worried that it might interfere with 
preparation for end-of-grade testing. National studies have been 
critical of DARE and its effectiveness, and the number of U.S. school 
systems that use the program dropped from 80 percent in 2002 to 75 
percent this year.

The Winston-Salem/Forsyth County school sys-tem dropped the DARE 
program in 1998 and offers another drug-education program.

Some law-enforcement officials and some educators still stand by the 
program. "I think any time you're giving children information to help 
them make healthy choices for themselves, it's well spent," said 
Bonnie Davis, a spokeswoman for Yadkin County Schools.
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