Gang Resistance Education and Training (G.R.E.A.T) is a national program that educates elementary and middle school children how to avoid becoming a gang member. The program is instructed by police officers and is part classroom instruction and other learning activities. “The goal of the GREAT program is to teach youth how to set goals for themselves, how to resist peer pressure, how to resolve conflicts, and how gangs can affect the quality of their lives.” (Ramsey, Rust, & Sobel, 2003) The program also teaches the youth personal empowerment, among other things, that prevent them from getting into any gang activity. Originally the program was based off a nine lesson middle-school curriculum.
The beginning of the G.R.E.A.T. program started in early 1992 in Arizona. The program was so successful that in 1993 it ballooned across the nation and was supported by congress as a part of the Alcohol Tobacco and Firearm’s project outreach. G.R.E.A.T. became one of the primary prevention programs. “In 1995, the G.R.E.A.T. Program underwent a comprehensive five-year longitudinal evaluation and study by the National Institute of Justice (NIJ), in conjunction with the University of Nebraska at Omaha, to measure the impact of the program.” (Board, 2011) The report showed that those involved in the program had “lower rates of victimization, more negative views about gangs, more favorable attitudes toward law enforcement, reduced risk-seeking behaviors, and increased association with peers involved in prosocial activities.” (Board, 2011) In 2000 the program underwent a curriculum review as a result of this review the program revised their core curriculum and used a random field trial where classrooms were randomly assigned to be control and test groups. The field test spanned thirty-one schools among seven cities and about four thousand students. The results showed that after one year, students from the test group had lower gang
References: Board, N. P. (2011, 10 21). http://www.great-online.org/Share/PDF/GREAT_Policy_Manual.pdf. Retrieved from Home - G.R.E.A.T. Program - Gang Resistance Education And Training: http://www.great-online.org/Share/PDF/GREAT_Policy_Manual.pdf Elementary School - G.R.E.A.T. Program - Gang Resistance Education And Training. (2012). Retrieved from Home - G.R.E.A.T. Program - Gang Resistance Education And Training: http://www.great-online.org/Components/ElementarySchool.Aspx Esbensen, F.-A., Osgood, D. W., Taylor, T. J., Peterson, D., & Freng, A. (2001). How great is G.R.E.A.T.? results from a longitudinal quasi-experimental design. Criminology & Public Policy, 1(1), 87-118. Retrieved from http://search.proquest.com/docview/200127599?accountid=32521 Esbensen, F.-A. (2004, June). Evaluating GREAT School Based Gang Prevention Program. Retrieved from Scribd: http://www.scribd.com/doc/33074920/Evaluating-GREAT-School-Based-Gang-Prevention-Program Middle School - G.R.E.A.T. Program - Gang Resistance Education And Training & . (2012). Retrieved from Home - G.R.E.A.T. Program - Gang Resistance Education And Training: http://www.great-online.org/Components/MiddleSchool.Aspx Organization - G.R.E.A.T. Program - Gang Resistance Education And Training. (2012). Retrieved from Home - G.R.E.A.T. Program - Gang Resistance Education And Training: http://www.great-online.org/organization/default.aspx Ramsey, A. L., Rust, J. O., & Sobel, S. M. (2003). Evaluation of the gang resistance and training (great) program: A school-Based prevention program. Education , 124 (2), 297-309. Retrieved from http://search.proquest.com/docview/196430085?accountid=32521 What is G.R.E.A.T.? (2012). Retrieved from Welcome to the Midwest Atlantic Region: http://www.mwgreat.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=category&id=6&Itemid=3