Drug Abuse Resistance Education (D.A.R.E.)
Deputy Ginger Johnson is assigned as the County’s D.A.R.E. officer. The D.A.R.E. program was adopted by the Commonwealth of Virginia in 1986. Smyth County implemented the program in 1987. The purpose of D.A.R.E. is a united effort by D.A.R.E., Certified Law Enforcement Officers, educators, students, parents, and the community to offer an educational program in the classroom to prevent or reduce drug abuse, violence, and gang involvement among children.
|The D.A.R.E. program is divided into two sections, one for Kindergarten
through 4th grade and the other for the 5th graders.
The program follows a carefully structured curriculum, focusing on topics such as personal safety, drug use and misuse, consequences of behavior, resisting peer pressure, building self-esteem, assertiveness training, managing stress without drugs, role models, and support systems.
School Resource Officers
The Smyth County Sheriff’s Office has ten full time school resource officers (SRO) assigned to the local schools
Tony Powers, Captain - Atkins Elementary School
Keith Jackson - Marion Elementary & Marion Senior High School
Ernie Atwell - Marion Middle School
Mark Harrington, Lt. - Chilhowie Middle and Chilhowie High School
Ginger Johnson - Chilhowie Elementary School
Randy Surber, Sgt. - Smyth Career & Technology Center
Neal Brooks, Cpl. - Oak Point Elementary School
Eric Davidson, Cpl. - Sugar Grove Elementary School
J. C. Robinson, Sgt. - Northwood High School
Adam Bolling - Northwood Middle School & Rich Valley Elementary School
School Resource Officer (SRO) programs have been in schools since the 1960's in the United States. The placement of law enforcement officers in schools has grown tremendously over the past decade; this increased dramatically following the school shootings of the late 1990s. Smyth County implemented the program in 1998.
Some of the duties of an SRO include:
· Meet with school board administration to discuss disciplinary action for students using school policy and state law.
· Meet with students individually and in groups to promote respectful, law abiding behavior.
· Provide security and maintain order
· Prevent criminal activity
· Investigate criminal activity that occurs on school property.
· Complete crime reports for school-related incidents.
· Issue citations and make arrests.
· Give classroom presentations on crime prevention and related topics.
· Provide security at school functions
SRO efforts to reduce crime, drug abuse, and violence provide a safer and more secure learning environment for our students and school staff.