Parents, students and family members gathered in the Losoya Intermediate Cafeteria on Friday, May 27, to celebrate this year’s fifth and sixth-grade D.A.R.E. graduates.
The D.A.R. E. Program was taught by Officer Melisa Arredondo. Ms. Arredondo has been with the Southside Police Department for more than 4 years and has over a decade of police expierience. Her knowlegde has been influentual in leading the D.A.R.E. Jr. Police Academy Club.
“It is an honor and privilege to be able to teach and lead a program that teaches young minds to choose to live healthy. The Losoya D.A.R.E Jr. Police Academy is a Leadership Club I started, to teach students how to lead with integrity, to stand for what is right-even if you stand alone.” says Ms. Arredondo.
Southside ISD has hosted the Drug Abuse Resistance Education D.A.R.E. program for 15 years. The D.A.R.E. Program was designed to help educate students on the importance of making positive choices regarding substance abuse. In recent years, the curriculum has also grown to cover the issue of bullying and what students can do to aid the victims of bullies and avoid being victims themselves.
This year two fifth graders, Cadet Ethan Paiz and Cadet Isaiah Greigo were awarded the D.A.R.E Essay Winner Certificate and pin. Also, recognized were top Superior Cadets Corporal Julissa Flores, sixth grade, Lead Officer Santiago M. Lopez III and Public Information Officer Charlotte Jane Guerra, fifth grade. These top cadets were presented with a Top Cadet necklace Medal and certificate.“I have a lot to say about DARE but there is one thing you need to have in D.A.R.E, commitment, because if you don’t have commitment, you won’t make it!” said sixth grade two year Cadet & Corporal Julissa Flores.
The master of the ceremony was Matthey Middle School, seventh grader and former D.A.R.E. Lieutenant, Christavella Arredondo. The guest speaker was Matthey Middle School, seventh grader and former D.A.R.E. Chief, Isaac Arredondo. These students demonstrated above and beyond the 75 grade point average, no discipline referrals, serve the community, patrol the campus, flag duty and attend after school meetings, every other Wednesday.
“DARE has helped me in my fear of someone bullying me.” says Fifth grade D.A.R.E Cadet-Catherine Trejo. To be a D.A.R.E cadet you must lead peers by example with integrity. They are held at a higher standard than their peers. Fifth grader D.A.R.E Cadet Desiree Alejandro says “This program has helped me with respect, kindness, and thankfulness and helped me raise my grades and pay more attention in class.”
This year over 36 cadets including fifth & sixth grade Losoya students, walked the stage after hours of instruction, and writing an essay about what they learned in the class. Each cadet was awarded a certificate of achievement, and D.A.R.E. Frisbee.
The cadets enjoyed pizza, cake and punch for all their accomplishments. Special Thanks to the Mrs. Jessica Maldonado, SISD Social Worker and Mr. Mark Aguilar, Losoya Teacher.
“I look forward to doing it all again next year!” says Ms. Melisa Arredondo, Southside ISD Police Officer.
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