The D.A.R.E. program began in Los Angles in 1983 as a
joint venture between the Los Angles Police Department and the Los Angeles
Unified School District, and has progressed from a local effort into one of the
nation's most widely recognized substance abuse prevention efforts. Today,
D.A.R.E. is taught by uniformed law enforcement officers in all fifty (50)
states and in more than two (2) dozen foreign countries.
Pennsylvania's formal involvement with D.A.R.E. began in
1986 when two (2) members of the Pittsburgh Bureau of Police successfully
completed the 80 hour D.A.R.E. Officer Training Seminar that was conducted by
the Los Angeles Police Department. Upon returning to Pittsburgh these officer
were responsible for the implementation of this program in the cities public and
non-public schools and became the first in the state. The following year members
of the Philadelphia Police Department received their certification as D.A.R.E.
Officers and implemented their program in the 1987-88 school year.
D.A.R.E. Officer Training began in Pennsylvania in the
summer of 1988 when the Philadelphia Police Department conducted its first
training class. The following year the Pittsburgh Bureau of Police conducted its
first training seminar. Since then, there has been a D.O.T. (D.A.R.E. Officer
Training) at least twice a year.
In recognition of the increasing interest in D.A.R.E.
being expressed by local police departments, the Pennsylvania Commission on
Crime and Delinquency (PCCD) implemented a mechanism to provide training to
local law enforcement agencies in Pennsylvania interested in starting their
D.A.R.E. programs in community schools. Since 1989, PCCD has focused its efforts
on training new D.A.R.E. Officers to meet the growing needs for this program
throughout Pennsylvania and in coordinating the efforts of the Philadelphia and
Pittsburgh training projects under the banner of the PCCD D.A.R.E. Training
Center. All of the D.A.R.E. Officers Training now in the state in conducted at
the Pennsylvania Masonic Home in Elizabethtown, Pennsylvania at the expense of
the Pennsylvania Freemasons.
Pennsylvania's D.A.R.E. effort has been the partnership
between the Department of Education and the Commission on Crime and Delinquency.
Department of Education staff have participated as guest presenters at PCCD
sponsored D.A.R.E. training sessions and continually encourage school officials
to participate in the program.