Abstract

This paper presents the results of an evaluation of the effects of the Drug Abuse Resistance Education (DARE)Project, a school-based drug use prevention program, in a sample of fifth and sixth graders in North Carolina. DARE is distinguished by its use of specially trained, uniformed police officers to deliver 17 weekly lessons in the classroom. The evaluation used an experimental design employing random assisgment of 20 schools to either a DARE or no-DARE condition, pre- and post-testing of both groups, attrition assessment, adjustments for school effects, and control for non-equivalency between comparison groups. DARE demonstrated no effect on adolescents' use of alcohol, cigarettes or inhalants, or on their future intentions to use these substances. However, DARE did make a positive impact on adolescents' awareness of the costs of using alcohol and cigarettes, perceptions of the media's portrayal of these substances, general and specific attitudes towards drugs, perceived peer attitudes toward drug use, and assertiveness.

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