DALLAS TOWNSHIP, LUZERNE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — A Luzerne County police officer is being recognized for his work educating children.
Dallas Township Police Officer, Bernard Posten, was recognized as “Pennsylvania Instructor of the Year” by Law Enforcement Against Drugs & Violence or L.E.A.D.
“The relationships we’re allowed to build and the stigmas we’re allowed to break it just changes everything in the dynamics,” said Officer Posten.
L.E.A.D is a national nonprofit organization committed to educating kids on how they can make smart decisions without the involvement of drugs or violence.
“I’ve learned it’s not good to do drugs and smoke cigarettes and don’t vape,” said fourth-grader Cole Hample.
“To resist drugs and alcohol and to say no to something you know isn’t good for you,” said student Jovie Alunni.
But officer Posten isn’t your typical police officer.
He takes an interactive approach to teaching kids what’s right and what’s wrong.
“He’s been actually kind of nice to us and the class has actually listened to him and he’s been good so we’ve been getting some rewards,” said Shane Hummer, a fourth-grade student.
“They love it and they love Officer Posten too. He really gets them involved in answering questions and they retain the information from week to week,” said Karen Skilonger who is a teacher.
He says sometimes all these kids need is a big brother, a role he takes on for all 187 fourth graders every day.
“At the youth level, they just need someone they can trust and talk to. They’re like oh I almost did something stupid but then I thought, oh Coach B would be mad at me. That kind of thing really lets you know you’re reaching,” said Officer Posten.
Creating a better future for NEPA.
You can visit the L.E.A.D website to learn more about the program and initiative.