Drug Abuse Resistance Program began nationally in 1983, and came to the Bridgeport Police Department by 1990. In 1997, Officers Jamie Hamrick and Mark Norman took over the program, teaching 5th graders at Johnson and Simpson Elementary Schools. In 2005, Officer Hamrick began her duty as the sole D.A.R.E. instructor, having been assigned to Bridgeport High School as a School Resource Officer.
In 2007, the program underwent some minor changes, moving the classes to the middle school level. As the program teaches young students about the dangers of drugs, alcohol, and tobacco, it was decided that the middle school curriculum might prove the best way to reach them when they were best able to understand the material and appreciate consequences.
The students are taught what drugs are, and their effects on the mind and body. They are given the information, and are encourages to decide for themselves what their responses should be. They are also encouraged to share this information with their parents, so that discussions can continue at home, further strengthening all our resolve to keep them away from drugs.
With the continued support of the Bridgeport Police Department and Bridgeport Middle School, the D.A.R.E. program will continue to educate our students to decide to keep drugs out of their lives.