Newsbrief: DARE Dropped in Toledo 6/14/02

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DARE seems to be on a roll these days, but it's all downhill for the embattled police-as-lawyer/doctor/social worker/educator drug education program. Last week, DRCNet reported on the Fort Worth, TX, police chief's decision to can the widely panned program (http://www.drcnet.org/wol/240.html#daretocutdare), and this week Toledo, OH, joined the growing number of cities and states that have dumped DARE. So far, that list also includes Salt Lake City, Snohomish County (suburban Seattle, WA) and the Michigan State Police.

In Toledo, Police Chief Michael Navarre told public and Catholic school officials on Monday that DARE was dead with the end of the school year. Navarre cited a series of studies questioning DARE's effectiveness, dating back to a 1994 National Institute of Justice review that found DARE had little or no impact on whether participants would go on to use alcohol or other drugs. Navarre had long been a DARE supporter, he told the Toledo Blade, but the accumulating studies questioning the program and DARE America's announcement last year it would revamp its curriculum prompted his decision.

But Navarre and school board members vowed to develop a new anti-drug program also using police officers as in-school presenters. "We're not going to walk away from drug education in the elementary schools," said Chief Navarre. "It is an important aspect of a child's education."

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