For the past seven weeks, fourth grade students at James Cole Elementary School have been meeting twice a week for 30 minutes with Tippecanoe School Corporation School Resource Officers Rob Rush and Aaron Gilman participating in the radKIDS program. According to the radKIDS website, the program "provides educational tools and resources that enhance the ability of children, parents, and families to utilize knowledge, skills, and power to protect themselves from violence and harm. Endorsed by the National Sheriffs' Association, the radKIDS® educational model is recognized as the national leader in safety education and violence prevention for children in the areas of Abduction, Bullying Prevention, Sexual Assault and Child Abuse"
Students learn about personal boundaries, personal safety skills, and explore techniques like a family password, fire safety, calling 911, and how to handle an overzealous dog. After completing the seven weeks course, each classroom held a 'graduation' where parents came to school to see the techniques demonstrated for them. This program fits into the school's approach to empower students to be their best. It also fits into the Cole Professional Continuum of providing useful life tools which will benefit students into adulthood.
"I am very grateful to Mrs. Bredar, Mrs. Ferger and of course Officer Rush and Officer Gilman for their willingness to provide this program to our students. Feedback from both students and parents has been very positive about this program. At Cole, we feel this program offers what I call "A pebble in your shoe" - something you may pull from later in life but not remember exactly where you learned it when you need it," stated Mike Pinto, Cole Principall. "We believe this program really will help our students with self-confidence and the ability to navigate difficult situations."