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Cottonwood Students Graduate From G.R.E.A.T. Program

KSCB News - March 6, 2013 8:23 am

The fifth grade students at Cottonwood Intermediate School just completed the GREAT program. GREAT, which stands for Gang Resistance Education and Training, is an evidence-based and effective gang and violence prevention program. It consisted of six unique lessons presented by our School Resource Officer (and LPD officer), Stacy Johnson.

The lessons’ topics included decision making skills, communication skills, anger management, respecting others and their differences, and identifying ways to be a GREAT citizen. The lessons contained some lecture, some reading, and lots of role playing and discussion.

The six weeks culminated in a graduation ceremony where the students received recognition and certificates for completion of the course. Speakers at the ceremony were Officer Johnson, Chief Alan Sill, and Vice Mayor Joe Denoyer. When the ceremony was completed, the students and their families were invited to eat pizza with their teachers and several police officers who attended to lend their support.

The students who received this instruction really enjoyed the program. These were some of their comments:

“We learned to NEVER participate in violence. I really liked it when Officer Johnson came to teach us about the GREAT program. I learned about doing good things and decision making.” Frankie Calderon

“I like doing GREAT because it is fun and teaches us about staying in school and being responsible. We get to act out little scenes during GREAT.” Anthony Martinez

“I learned a lot of good techniques on how to calm myself down when I’m angry or when someone gets bullied. We did lots of activities; one of those activities was reading a play and acting out a scene. In all of our scenes there was a message. It was a great experience and I would love for everyone to experience the program.” Machia Mullens

“I can probably speak for my whole class when I say that the GREAT program was very educational and also very fun. It taught us how to make the right decisions and how to be a GREAT person in more than one way. I can’t wait to take this class again in 7th grade.” Hunter Thomas


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