Superintendents’ Intentions toward DARE: Results from a Statewide Survey?

Dennis L. Thombs, Jennifer Ray-Tomasek

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


This investigation assessed superintendents’ beliefs and intentions toward Drug Abuse Resistance Education (DARE) and drug prevention programming, using a modified Theory of Planned Behavior as a framework. The study’s primary purpose was to predict intentions toward future reliance on DARE. In June 2000 an anonymous mail survey was sent to all 611 public school superintendents in Ohio. The response rate was 71.5%. DARE was used by 85 to 87% of the state’s public school districts. A large majority of the superintendents (88.2%) reported that they intended to rely on the program in the future. Most held either incorrect information about DARE’s efficacy (29.0%) or acknowledged that that they were uninformed about DARE outcome research (33.6%). A multiple logistic regression analysis found that intention to use DARE in the future was positively associated with normative beliefs about community support for the program and negatively related with perceptions of their ability to replace drug prevention curricula in their district. The findings suggest that superintendents’ positive intentions toward DARE were formed to avert conflict with adults in the school district and community. The dissemination of evidence-based drug prevention strategies will likely require stimulating parental demand for efficacious programming, in addition to educating school officials.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)267-274
Number of pages8
JournalAmerican Journal of Health Education
Issue number5
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2001


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