DARE officers are an invaluable resource. However, DARE, a program which stands for Drug and Alcohol Resistance Education, is no longer funded by Missouri tax dollars.
This budget cut has forced some school districts, such as Jackson, to eliminate the program from the curriculum.
Cape Girardeau residents are ensuring that the program continues. The Cape Girardeau DARE program, which serves 11 schools and thousands of students, is now operating on solely on donations.
The DARE program began in 1987 in Los Angeles. The program is traditionally known as a resource to teach children to stay away from drugs and alcohol. However, DARE officers are also dealing with a host of other issues including: gangs, guns, Internet safety and prescription drugs.
Today's youth are inundated with pressures that can lead to destructive lives. Having a local police officer come to the schools is a great opportunity for students to ask questions.
Thank you to the people of Cape Girardeau for funding DARE. The students are better off because of your support. Hopefully other communities will follow Cape Girardeau's lead and privately fund the DARE program for their schools.