Community of Peace Academy named Minnesota School of Character

Community of Peace Academy announced Jan. 30 that Character.org, a national advocate and leader for character in collaboration with Synergy & Leadership Exchange, named Community of Peace Academy a 2019 Minnesota School of Character. The program recognized Community of Peace Academy as a school that has demonstrated its use of character development to drive a positive impact on academics, student behavior and Community of Peace Academy’s climate. Community of Peace Academy is the only school in Minnesota to be named a 2019 Minnesota School of Character.

Community of Peace Academy is a tuition-free public charter school that opened its doors in 1995 on the East Side of St. Paul, at 471 Magnolia Ave. E. The school serves approximately 800 students in preschool through 12th grade and is led by Executive Director Cara Quinn. 

The Schools of Character application process is an opportunity for schools and districts to receive thoughtful feedback for growth and excellence in the area of character development through Character.org’s 11 Principles of Character framework. It is also a method of recognizing exemplary schools and districts in the nation.

Since its inception in 1993, Character.org has recognized more than 565 schools with the distinction of State School of Character. Criteria for the designation are based on Character.org’s 11 Principles of Effective Character Education, which includes providing students with opportunities for moral action, fostering shared leadership and engaging families and communities as partners in character-building efforts. 

“I can’t imagine teaching without character ed,” says second-grade teacher Madison Armstrong. “It allows me to build lasting relationships with students. They see that I’m invested in who they are as learners and people. I see wonderful relationships between my students. They care about and support each other to be their best selves. They have empathy and support and learn from one other. They have academic success because they feel safe and included. It would be difficult to implement this warm community without character ed.”

Character.org is a national nonprofit based in Washington, D.C. It works with schools, families, workplaces and other communities to inspire, educate and empower people to be ethical and compassionate citizens. Character.org is comprised of character leaders dedicated to individual growth and success through the advancement of quality character development in all schools and communities. The impact of this is seen through improved academic achievement, decline in behavioral problems such as truancy and an increase in an overall positive school climate. Visit www.character.org to learn more about the National Forum and the Schools of Character program.

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