Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2009, $119,984)
The Gang Resistance Education and Training (G.R.E.A.T.) program is a life-skills competency program designed to provide students with the skills they need to avoid gang pressure and youth violence. G.R.E.A.T.'s violence prevention curricula help students develop values and practice behaviors that will help them avoid destructive activities. G.R.E.A.T. program staff coordinates project activities with federal, regional, state, and local agencies, as well as individuals from community and civic groups. The goal of the program is to train criminal justice professionals to deliver a school-based curriculum that teaches life-skills competencies, gang awareness, and violence-avoidance techniques.
The Northside Independent School District will use the fiscal year 2009 G.R.E.A.T. funds to deliver the middle school, summer, and families components. Funds will expand the district's existing program to include 13 middle schools selected based upon the presence of gang activity, the number of economically disadvantaged students, and self-selection of campus administrators. It is anticipated 3,000 students and 65 families will receive the structured lessons in an effort to create safer schools and communities by building positive relationships with law enforcement, increasing positive perceptions of law enforcement, and strengthening families by engaging parents and youth and fostering communication and enhanced decision making skills. The programs will be coordinated with multiple city agencies that have agreed to serve on a G.R.E.A.T. advisory council to ensure the delivery of a quality program.