Benefits of Having a G.R.E.A.T. Program

Benefits of GREAT

Law Enforcement Benefits

Benefits of having a G.R.E.A.T. Program in your agency:

  • The G.R.E.A.T. Program assists in building better relationships between law enforcement officers and the community.
  • The G.R.E.A.T. Program reduces gang joining while increasing negative attitudes toward gangs and positive attitudes toward law enforcement.
  • G.R.E.A.T. training and experience sharpen officers' skills in communication and dealing with the public.

Educator Benefits

Benefits of having a G.R.E.A.T. Program in your school:

  • The G.R.E.A.T. Program provides students with opportunities to model and practice life skills and attitudes needed to treat others with respect and empathy, make better choices, and set positive and achievable goals.
  • The G.R.E.A.T. Middle and Elementary School Curricula integrate the Standards for the English Language Arts, published jointly by the National Council of Teachers of English and the International Reading Association, and the National Health Education Standards, developed by the Joint Committee on National Health Education Standards.
  • The G.R.E.A.T. Program integrates prevention practices to increase protective factors, such as school bonding, feeling safe at school, having the ability to solve problems, and being resourceful in seeking out sources of support.

Student Benefits

Benefits of participating in a G.R.E.A.T. Program in your class:

  • The G.R.E.A.T. Program focuses on providing you with life skills to avoid criminal behavior and gang membership.
  • The G.R.E.A.T. Program provides you the chance to interact positively with law enforcement in your classroom.
  • The G.R.E.A.T. Program teaches you how to deal with issues such as bullying, peer pressure, and decision making.

Parent Benefits

Benefits of having your child participate in the G.R.E.A.T. Program:

  • The G.R.E.A.T. Program teaches your child how to solve problems without resorting to delinquent behavior, gang membership, and violence.
  • The G.R.E.A.T. Program promotes a positive relationship between your child and law enforcement within the community.
  • The G.R.E.A.T. Program provides a families component that gives you and your child the opportunity to bond and strengthen healthy behaviors within the family unit.

Public Benefits

Benefits of having the G.R.E.A.T. Program in your community:

  • The G.R.E.A.T. Program assists in building more-positive relationships between law enforcement and other parts of your community.
  • The G.R.E.A.T. Program teaches children to deal more effectively with serious issues affecting their behavior and the community, such as bullying, peer pressure, managing anger, and making good decisions.
  • G.R.E.A.T. Program students compared to non-G.R.E.A.T. students showed lower rates of gang involvement and delinquency and less-positive attitudes towards gangs.

If G.R.E.A.T. has an established presence in your community, you can:

  • Encourage the G.R.E.A.T. agency to form a G.R.E.A.T. Advisory Committee on which key leaders in the community (local mayor, school board members, PTO/PTA), along with the G.R.E.A.T. agency representative(s), are invited to serve.
  • Partner with the G.R.E.A.T. agency to offer summer program activities (a restaurant owner could offer cooking classes, a bowling alley manager could offer a bowling day, etc.).
  • Partner with the G.R.E.A.T. agency in offering community service opportunities that the G.R.E.A.T. students can do for their G.R.E.A.T. projects (required to complete the class).
  • Volunteer with the G.R.E.A.T. agency as needed (for example, serve as a chaperone for a large G.R.E.A.T. student outing).

Don’t have a G.R.E.A.T. Program in your community? Please see below on how to get your community involved.

How Can My Community Get Involved?

There are several ways for citizens of a community to become involved with the G.R.E.A.T. Program. Although only criminal justice professionals are permitted to teach the G.R.E.A.T. lessons, those concerned about the welfare of the youth in their community (parents, guardians, elected officials, school board members, teachers, community program directors, etc.) can help make the G.R.E.A.T. Program a success in their community. Listed below are a few of the many ways that you can have an impact on the lives of youth in your community.

If the G.R.E.A.T. Program is currently not available in your community, you can:

  • Petition local criminal justice agencies (i.e., police department, sheriff’s office, prosecutors, probation officers) to start the Program.
  • Encourage the local school district to petition local criminal justice agencies to start the Program.
  • Discuss the positive impact of the Program at town hall, county commission, parent-teacher organization, and/or school board meetings.