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Character Education

What is Character Education?

Districts CARD logo that stands for caring, appreciation, respect, and determination

"Character education is the deliberate effort to help young people understand, care about, and act upon core ethical values... we want [students] to be able to judge what is right, care deeply about what is right, and then do what they believe to be right—even in the face of pressure from without and temptation from within" - Dr. Thomas Lickona

Character education impacts school climate. It contributes to our schools being a positive place to be, and as a result, students are more motivated and able to be their best. Research shows that character education is positively correlated with academic achievem ent.

"In schools of character, adults embrace their critical role as models. Teachers work together as professionals—and with parents and community members as partners—to positively shape the social, emotional, and character development of the young people entrusted to them each day. As a result, students in these schools feel safe, respected, and connected to those around them, allowing them to thrive academically and socially and be motivated to give back to their communities." (excerpt from the Character Education Partnership website)

Click here to learn more about our character education programs by school

Resources:'s 11 Principles of Effective Character Education are the cornerstone of’s philosophy on effective character education. Each principle outlines vital aspects of character education.

New Jersey Alliance for Social Emotional and Character Development (NJASECD)
The New Jersey Alliance for Social, Emotional and Character Development is the state sponsor of the New Jersey Schools of Character Program. New Jersey Schools of Character are selected by NJASECD for having reached a standard of excellence within in the area of character development. The applications of schools recognized as NJSOCs are forwarded to the Character Education Partnership for consideration at the national level.

National School Climate Center (NSCC)
The goal of SCSS is to promote positive and sustained school climate: a safe, supportive environment that nurtures social and emotional, ethical, and academic skills. We are an organization that helps schools integrate crucial social and emotional learning with academic instruction. In doing so, we enhance student performance, prevent drop outs, reduce physical violence, bullying, and develop healthy and positively engaged adults.
If you work with kids, and you need to implement character education tomorrow, and you want some immediate help, this is where to start. But if your character education program is cruising, and you just want some additional ideas and materials, this is also where to start.