DARE Never Dies


I'm not sure if anyone has noted this yet: Last month the General Accounting Office issued a report that drove one more giant spike into the coffin of Drug Abuse Resistance Education. The problem is that the coffin is empty. As I noted last summer, every time someone points out that DARE doesn't work, it is reincarnated in a supposedly new form. After a decade of well-justified criticism from parents, journalists, and education researchers, it remains the nation's most popular drug abuse prevention program.

Reviewing six long-term evaluations of DARE, the GAO concluded: "All of the evaluations suggested that DARE had no statistically significant long-term effect on preventing youth illicit drug use." Ah, but that was the old DARE; the new curriculum is being evaluated by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, with results expected in 2006.