SPRINGFIELD – Governor Rod R. Blagojevich today announced that Illinois schools are now receiving Child Lures prevention program materials to be used after the first of the year. The Governor launched the Child Lures prevention program in September - a nationally recognized initiative that teaches children, parents and school officials to recognize potential danger signs and make smart decisions to avoid child predators. Illinois is the first state to implement the program in schools on a statewide level.
“Soon, every elementary and middle school in Illinois will launch the Child Lures program and focus part of the remaining school year on teaching kids how to recognize potential dangers and make smart decisions, which will help them stay safe,” said Governor Blagojevich.
The Child Lures prevention program will be available in each of Illinois’ 3,220 elementary and middle schools. Each school will receive a package with two videos, one to prepare teachers to present the program, and one to present to children, along with a presenter’s handbook and a parent’s guide.
In November, Child Lures prevention program creator and child personal safety expert Ken Wooden visited numerous Illinois schools, meeting with students, teachers and parents to help usher in the new program.
The Child Lures Prevention school program teaches children life skills to keep them safe from sexual abuse, date rape, abduction, Internet crime, drugs and school violence. The program, which can be taught within the health curriculum annually, consists of a straightforward training video and Presenter's Instruction Guide with easy-to-follow scripted lesson plans, practice scenarios, follow-up activities, comprehension assessment, and tools for parental involvement. A student video with four realistic dramatizations allows students to clearly visualize just how easily they may be lured into dangerous situations.
"We know that protection of our children is an utmost responsibility-both for parents and school personnel. We believe that bringing the Illinois Child Lures prevention program to Illinois schools can help all of us better work together to achieve that goal," said Dr. Randy Dunn, Illinois State Board of Education Superintendent.
At least 1 in 5 girls and 1 in 10 boys will be sexually abused before they turn 18, according to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. The Illinois Department of Children and Family Services estimates that more than 8,000 children are sexually abused every year in Illinois.
Child Lures is endorsed by the National Associations of Elementary and Secondary School Principals, and is used by the U.S. State Department’s Foreign Service Institute. While Illinois is the first state to implement Child Lures in schools statewide, the program is currently used in more than 1,000 school systems in 43 states.