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St. Mary’s School Announces 15 Graduates From the D.A.R.E. Program

Mariah DelaVega reads her D.A.R.E. essay in front of 100 students, parents, teachers and friends at the St. Mary’s School graduation ceremony.
Mariah DelaVega reads her D.A.R.E. essay in front of 100 students, parents, teachers and friends at the St. Mary’s School graduation ceremony. (St. Mary’s School photo)

Sixth grade students from St. Mary of the Assumption School graduated from the City of Santa Maria Police Department’s Drug Abuse Resistance Education program (D.A.R.E.) Monday, Dec. 7, 2015.  

Officer Al Torres presented 15 students certificates for completing the 3-month long weekly program. The graduation ceremony was attended by approximately 100 students, parents and friends.  

Officer Torres, a St. Mary’s School graduate, has been teaching D.A.R.E. to local sixth graders for 13 years.  

“Of course, we’re very proud of one of our very own alumni, Officer Torres, who is making such a huge impact on Santa Maria’s youth” said Michelle Cox, St. Mary’s School principal. “He’s a role model for all our students and embodies the characteristic of service, which is a foundation of a St. Mary’s School education.”

D.A.R.E. builds relationships between students and local police officers and provides students information on the dangers and impact of drugs and alcohol.

“Children receive so many mixed messages from watching TV, the Internet, and listening to music,” said Christina Miller, the school’s science and sixth-grade teacher. “D.A.R.E provides a positive message to say no to drugs and alcohol.”

“At St. Mary’s School, we teach God created us in his image and we must not abuse our bodies,” continued Cox. “D.A.R.E. reinforces the value we should place on every human being.”

Michelle Cox represents St. Mary's School.


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