Some local students have a lot to look forward to once they get back from the Thanksgiving holiday.

The Bossier Sheriff's Office says 700 Bossier 5th-graders will graduate from the Drug Abuse Resistance Education (D.A.R.E.) program at eight elementary schools throughout Bossier Parish.

The D.A.R.E. program is a semester-long curriculum taught by sheriff's deupties that emphasizes good decision skills for young people in order to avoid bullying, drugs, violence and other harmful behaviors. Students are also taught confidence-building and coping skills.

Central Park Elementary graduated 65 during its ceremony last week. Here's the schedule for the other participating schools:

Dec. 1 at 1 p.m. - Carrie Martin

Dec. 2 at 9:30 a.m. - Apollo

Dec. 2 at 1 p.m. - Waller

Dec. 3 at 9 a.m. - Kerr

Dec. 3 at 1 p.m. - Elm Grove

Dec. 8 at 9 a.m. - Bossier

Dec. 15 at 9 a.m. - Legacy

Dec. 16 at 9 a.m. - Kingston

"As a former D.A.R.E. instructor and mentor, law enforcement officer of 25 years and father of two, I’ve seen first-hand the impact that bad decisions have on our young people," said Bossier Sheriff Julian Whittington in a news release. "D.A.R.E. instruction continues to be one of the most productive programs aimed at teaching our children how to make good choices in order set the groundwork for productive lives."

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