In 2012, the Swatara Township Police Department became a part of a new initiative in Pennsylvania called T.E.A.M. T.E.A.M. stands for Teaching, Educating, And Mentoring and has been instituted in schools within Swatara Township and Paxtang Borough to replace the D.A.R.E. program.
T.E.A.M. was started by the Michigan State Police in 1998 in collaboration with public and private school curriculum experts. The curriculum is designed for grades K-12 and covers topics such as personal, internet, gun, and fire safety, along with lessons on the harm of drugs, bullying, and other emergency situations. Older students get additional lessons on the court system, defensive driving, seat belt safety, and dating violence. A trained police officer acts in a liaison role with the school to establish relationships with the students through teaching and mentoring.
The flexibility of the T.E.A.M. curriculum will allow the police officers to tailor specific programs to their target audiences. The strength of the program is that the police department and the schools can work together to bring important life lessons to students and the officers can build lasting relationships as positive role models.
Swatara Police currently has 6 T.E.A.M. trained officers who have been working within the Central Dauphin School District, Steelton-Highspire School District and the St. Catherine Laboure School since it's inception.