RUMFORD —  Eighty-four fifth-grade students at local schools will graduate Tuesday, April 2, from the Rumford Police Department’s Drug Abuse Resistance Education program.

The students are asked to arrive at 5:30 p.m. at Mountain Valley High School’s Muskie Auditorium, where the program begins 30 minutes later.

The guest speaker will be Janet Mills, Maine’s attorney general, Sgt. Douglas Maifeld, a department DARE instructor since 1993, said Thursday.

Graduating students from Meroby and Rumford Elementary schools and Holy Savior School are asked to check with Maifeld or any of the Mexico Explorers on arrival, because seats are reserved for them.

Maifeld said the department is celebrating its 25th year and 26th culmination of DARE in the River Valley area.

“The DARE program educates fifth-grade students of the dangers of drugs, bullying and violence,” he said.

This year’s class is one of the program’s smaller groups, Maifeld said. Last year’s graduating class was just over 100 students.

“I’ve seen as many as 150 to 160,” he said.

Maifeld said he wanted to get the word out Thursday that due to a scheduling conflict the ceremony will be held April 2 rather than April 3 as he initially announced.

Rumford and Meroby Elementary schools’ band and chorus have a function in Waterville on April 3, he said.

“Twenty percent of my kids would have been gone if we had it that day,” Maifeld said.

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