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Madison sixth graders complete DARE program

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MASSENA - Madison Elementary sixth graders recently celebrated their graduation from the D.A.R.E.—Drug Abuse Resistance Education—program.The highly successful program is a joint effort between the school district and the Massena Police Department to educate students about the dangers of drug and alcohol abuse. Massena D.A.R.E. Officer Christopher Flynn led the students through 10 classes leading up to a graduation ceremony complete with diplomas.

“D.A.R.E. graduates, I feel that you are all ready to go on to junior high and face the many challenges that are ahead of you.You have made me proud. Continue to make yourselves, your community and your parents proud.Congratulations,” said Officer Flynn.

Chief of Police Tim Currier, Massena Mayor Jim Hidy and Madison principal Alan Oliver also attended the ceremony and offered their congratulations.

D.A.R.E. tries to reach students early, before they are directly exposed to drug abuse. By learning the facts, Officer Flynn hopes students will be better prepared to face the challenges as they grow older.

To conclude the program, students wrote an essay describing what D.A.R.E. meant to them.Students presented their essays to their class and Officer Flynn.Each homeroom teacher and Officer Flynn chose the winning essays.Each class had two first place awards and two second place awards:

■First Place Essay Awards:Hayley Castagnier, Desiree Hargrave, Samuel Ashley, Kylie Monroe, Jessica Amo and Sarah McGuire.

■Second Place Essay Awards:Halleigh Lucey, Macey Hance, Molly Proper, Madison Hellinger,

“This is really the beginning of a long journey of keeping our kids drug and alcohol free – it’s a challenge there is no question about it.When you hear the essays you know that these kids get it –they get the message,” said Chief Currier.

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