Several years ago, we started a program that was intended to improve discipline and build character. It was well received by the kids and staff as it was our own code of conduct. Kids could recite it by heart and were reminded when they did not live up to their promises. As with many good intentions it has somehow fallen into that pile of things that we used to do and then forgotten all together.
I believe that character does count, and should be the foundation of our school curriculum. While surfing the web to get some new ideas on the subject I came across the Josephson Institute's web site and found their Six Pillars of Character. We have adopted them, as our new code of conduct. They are reprinted them below:
Be honest • Don’t deceive, cheat or steal • Be reliable — do what you say you’ll do • Have the courage to do the right thing • Build a good reputation • Be loyal — stand by your family, friends and country
Treat others with respect; follow the Golden Rule • Be tolerant of differences • Use good manners, not bad language • Be considerate of the feelings of others • Don’t threaten, hit or hurt anyone • Deal peacefully with anger, insults and disagreements
Do what you are supposed to do • Persevere: keep on trying! • Always do your best • Use self-control • Be self-disciplined • Think before you act — consider the consequences • Be accountable for your choices
Play by the rules • Take turns and share • Be open-minded; listen to others • Don’t take advantage of others • Don’t blame others carelessly
Be kind • Be compassionate and show you care • Express gratitude • Forgive others • Help people in need
Do your share to make your school and community better • Cooperate • Get involved in community affairs • Stay informed; vote • Be a good neighbor • Obey the laws and rules, but at times it is necessary to question athority • Respect authority • Protect the environment