D.A.R.E (Drug Abuse Resistance Education) is a program taught by our Police Officers to students on the fifth and seventh grade levels. We reach approximately one thousand, one hundred students a year with this program.
D.A.R.E. is a collaborative effort by D.A.R.E. Certified Law Enforcement Officers, educators, students, parents and the Community to offer an educational program in the classroom to prevent or reduce drug abuse and violence among children and youth. The emphasis of the program is to help students recognize and resist the many direct and subtle pressures that influence them to experiment with alcohol, tobacco, Marijuana, inhalants and other drugs or to engage in violence.
D.A.R.E. is organized into nine 45 minute lessons in the fifth grade and six 45 minute lessons in the seventh grade.
The Ridgefield Police Department presently has five Police Officers involved with teaching the program on a part-time basis. The D.A.R.E. program in Ridgefield began in the 1990-91 school year at the fifth grade level. In 1996-97, the program was expanded to include the 7th and 10th grades; 10th grade D.A.R.E. was eliminated in 2004.
This program is funded through the budget process, residents and members of the Ridgefield Police Department's Police Benevolent Association and Police Fund.
G.R.A.D.D. (Government of Ridgefield Against Drunk Driving) is a cooperative effort between the Police Department, students, faculty, Town government and citizens to attempt to ensure a safe and sober graduation period for our students. We all know that graduation from high school is a time of celebration for all students. Unfortunately, this celebration often involves alcohol and/or drugs. We work along with the other factions in our Town to prevent this.
The Ridgefield High School has designated white graduation gowns for females each year. They have also designated four colors for the male graduate. Each class has its own color and when the Senior Class graduates, the Freshman Class then takes that color and eventually, as a Senior, will wear that color gown when they graduate.
Police Officers wear ribbons on their uniforms (white for female students and the year color for male students) to signify our support for them. We also fly these class colors on the Department's flag pole and ribbons are tied to the antennae of our patrol units
Additionally, signs are printed at the high school and given to Town merchants to display in their front windows as a show of support for the program. The Department also gives these class ribbons to the members of the graduating class so they can tie them on their own vehicles and their family's vehicles.
Police Officers do an anti-drunk driving presentation at a school assembly to demonstrate the dangers of drunk driving. The media generates much publicity for this cause beginning with a kick-off ceremony approximately one month before graduation. The program then runs for one month until the day after graduation.
The Ridgefield Police Department annually plans, organizes and stages a large Halloween party for the youth of Ridgefield. This party is held at the Ridgefield Community Center on October 31st. The Community Center is decorated in the appropriate decor and volunteers help to make this event a success. A magician performs, Madame Zelda is present to tell your fortune and refreshments/candy are available for all who visit.
Be sure to inspect all treats that your child receives from outside the home; all treats should be in the original sealed wrapper.
If your children are going to go out with someone other than yourself, be sure to know their route, the friends they will be with and that there is adequate adult supervision. Be sure you are able to locate your child, if necessary.