The Law Enforcement Against Drugs (L.E.A.D.) program is a joint effort by LEAD certified law enforcement officers, educators, students, parents, and the community to offer an educational program in the classroom as well as real life assistance outside of the classroom. This program, thanks to it’s officers, are going to prevent or reduce drug abuse and violence among children and youth. The Township of Washington Police Department L.E.A.D. program led by P.O. Heather Castronova, with assistance from the Westwood Police Department, will be taught in the 6th and 7th grade classrooms. The L.E.A.D curriculum has proven effective in reducing adolescent alcohol, marijuana, and tobacco use in students by preparing students to act decisively in refusing offers to use drugs, and helping students to recognize the risks and avoid drug-related situations. It also focuses on building strong decision-making, communication, planning and assertive refusal skills. At the core of the program is empowering youth to value their own perceptions and feelings and make choices that support drug-free values. For additional information on the L.E.A.D. program, please click here.