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A life skills programme for 7-9 year olds growing up in a drug using world, Keep On Track is a programme of study has been written by teachers; for teachers, parents, carers and grandparents to use in their learning environments at home, in school and the wider community. An extensive research project was developed which enabled a detailed pilot scheme to be undertaken. By involving a number of schools from a variety of catchment areas and backgrounds across Nottinghamshire, the research has enabled the development of a set of completed resources. This is a cross-curricular programme that enables access to other areas of the curriculum. The resources created link with the National Curriculum, SEAL and, more importantly, The Every Child Matters (ECM) framework. Elements of the work can be used to support the Assessing Pupil Progress initiative (APP) procedures in the classroom.
Why was Keep On Track written?
On Track, a life-skills programme for children in Key Stage One had previously been developed and there was already an extensive Programme of Study delivered in Nottinghamshire for Years 5 and 6. However, there was a lack of quality material to ensure progression of drug education in Years 3 and 4 linking to the ECM Framework. This programme of study was funded by Experian, has had the backing of Nottinghamshire Police, Nottinghamshire County LA, Nottingham City LA and DARE UK. A comprehensive range of piloting and research has been carried out in order to ensure that this fully meets the needs and aims of all Stakeholders involved.
The original project was to be written by Noreen Wetton, author of On Track. She set the framework for Keep On Track but sadly passed away before the project got underway. This booklet is therefore dedicated to her, for her inspiration and dedication to educating children and young people.
What did the research show?
Children, parents, carers and grandparents were concerned about a variety of key elements:
1) Behaviour associated with alcohol and how people acted when under the influence.
2) There was a lack of understanding on safe behavioural procedures when coming into contact with suspicious packages, needles, syringes and medicines.
3) Children had a lack of understanding that all medicines are drugs but not all drugs are medicines.
4) Stereotyping was an issue, as children believed that drugs were only issued and used by ‘druggies’ in order to get a ‘kick’ or ‘high’.