Press "Enter" to skip to content

D.A.R.E. graduation celebrated at Chattahoochee Elementary

Twenty students graduated from the Drug Abuse Resistance Education Program at Chattahoochee Elementary School last week.

Deputy Jamica Barfield, the school’s resource officer who taught the course, oversaw the graduation ceremony Friday, February 9.

After more than a decade hiatus, Chattahoochee Elementary was the first school in the district to relaunch the program in December 2022.

The 10-week curriculum covered topics such as alcohol, tobacco, marijuana, making healthy choices, consequences, responsibility, bullying, and peer pressure.

Students received certificates of completion and participated in an essay contest, with winners selected by teachers.

The keynote speaker, Honorable Judge Kathy Garner, emphasized the importance of making good choices and good decisions.

“Judge Garner believes in you, and Judge Garner loves you,” Garner, who is a Gadsden County native said to the children as she began her speech.

Garner, who handles cases dealing with children, urged the students to resist drugs, bullying, and criminal activities that could ultimately lead them to a courtroom where they will have to defend their actions in an attempt to prove their innocence.

During the ceremony, Sheriff Morris A. Young, a former D.A.R.E. instructor, highlighted the program’s positive impact on youth.

Young said he holds the program close to his heart as he has seen the impact it has on youth who use the positive information for everyday life.