An anti-drug program that reached more than 350-thousand Iowa students last year is being recognized today with its own day. Marvin Van Haaften, director of Iowa’s Office of Drug Control Policy, says DARE Day in Iowa is designed to raise awareness about the Drug Abuse Resistance Education program. He says there’s been some criticism of the program in the past and they’ve changed the program to meet those concerns. Van Haaften says studies show the changes have worked. Van Haaften says the program, which targets primarily fifth and sixth graders, is taught by about 300 law officers in nearly 85 percent of Iowa’s school districts.The two-day Governor’s Substance Abuse Prevention conference will open Monday in Des Moines. Van Haaften says it’s there the newest Iowa Youth Survey will be released. Van Haaften says he expects the study to show good results in reaching kids. He says DARE gives young Iowans the skills to resist alcohol, tobacco and other drugs while improving their self-esteem and building positive relationships between students and law enforcement.
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