Officer Travis Counts teaches the Gang Resistance Education and Training (G.R.E.A.T.) program at Paducah Middle School. The nation-wide program started in 1992 with the mission of preventing youth crime, violence, and gang involvement. The curriculum focuses on decision-making and refusal skills toward drugs, gang involvement, and other dangerous/criminal situations. The program addresses how to deal effectively with peer pressure and works with kids on goal planning. For more information about the G.R.E.A.T. program, visit the G.R.E.A.T website.
The Drug Abuse Resistance Education (D.A.R.E.) program is a 10-week curriculum taught in 5th grade at all the city elementary schools as well as St. Mary Elementary School. Several officer instructors divide the responsibility of teaching the classes.
The D.A.R.E. program has been around since the mid-1980’s and has undergone several major curriculum overhauls to stay current and relevant to the changing world. The current curriculum is 10 weeks of instruction focusing on good decision-making skills and ways to prevent, avoid, or respond to situations that involve drugs, alcohol, bullying, or other dangerous situations. The D.A.R.E. program also provides supplemental lessons to kindergarten-4th grade, on personal safety and conflict resolution.
In 2020, 175 elementary students graduated from the D.A.R.E. program. Also, the officers held many visits with students in kindergarten through 4th grades. For more information about the D.A.R.E. program, visit the D.A.R.E. website.
The D.A.R.E. program is supported financially by the Paducah Police Department. Teaching materials and rewards are purchased each year for students. If you are interested in contributing to the D.A.R.E. effort, contact Community Resource Officer Gretchen Morgan. In the following video, Officer Morgan talks about our local D.A.R.E. program.
If you are interested in financially supporting the D.A.R.E. program by donating to the Paducah-McCracken County Drug Council, contact Officer Gretchen Morgan or Officer Chris Fearon. The Paducah-McCracken County Drug Council is a non-profit organization that supports the D.A.R.E. and G.R.E.A.T. programs. The council was created in 1992 to provide an avenue for businesses and individuals to donate funds to support drug and alcohol resistance programs at local schools. In May 2013, the Paducah-McCracken County Drug Council sponsored a golf scramble which raised $3000 to help pay for t-shirts, certificates, and other program materials.