D.A.R.E. (Drug Abuse Resistance Education) graduation for fifth grade students attending James, Horace Mann, Eisenhower and Wilson Elementary will be held Tuesday, November 22 at 7 p.m. in the Ottumwa High School auditorium to recognize the students who have completed the program.
D.A.R.E. is a comprehensive 17-week prevention program that teaches various skills for resisting illegal drug use to students. Students learn how to avoid violence, resist peer pressure, to say no, to make choices and accept consequences, and to find alternatives to drugs.
Brandon Gravett, an Ottumwa Police Officer, teaches D.A.R.E, with assistance from the elementary counseling staff. Students must meet several requirements to attend graduation, including complete the 17-week program and all workbook assignments, write an essay, and attend the graduation ceremony.
Winning essays on the topic "Why I Will Make Wise Choices" include: Raeli Sundermeyer and Annika Hicks, Horace Mann; Mia Tanner and Irish Songer, James; Emma Becker and Grace Tippett, Eisenhower; and Yaeli Carapia and Monique Benedict, Wilson.