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Character development and spiritual and ethical education comprise the critical “other half” of your school’s mission, and are an important part of what differentiates your school [especially independent schools] from other schools in parents’ eyes. 

Character education elevates your school’s reputation, so you can recruit and retain top students.


  • Independent schools that emphasize spiritual and ethical education find that their alumni more frequently recommend their alma mater.
  • Not only are parents concerned about academics and where their child attends college, the majority of parents think schools should teach communication and relationship skills (78%, 57%) and build a student's character (51%).*


Character education improves academics.

Schools that carefully implement initiatives for character education improve their levels of academic progress at the same time.

  • Build students' character
  • Boost academics
  • Improve teacher and peer relationships


The Evidence

To be effective, character development must be a deliberate, integral part of your programming. Hoping students will learn it "organically, because it's part of your culture" isn't enough. Over a decade of evidence-based research shows us that the key is increasing internal motivation through autonomy, competence and building student-teacher and peer relationships. 


Get Started

Are you ready to move from ethical CONVERSATION to ethical ACTION? Lead your school from where it is today to where you envision it to be with a few simple techniques that can be implemented everyday, in every classroom (and throughout the school). Transform your school's culture, all without purchasing or implementing any additional curriculum.
  1. Get Simply Solid Strategies emailed monthly (it's free)
  2. Become a CSEE Member
  3. Read a copy of the "mind-bending" books below
  4. Send your staff for unparallelled professional development [or we can come to you]
  5. Learn more about our 3-Year Ethical Culture Partnership


Mind-Bending Books

  1. Breaking Into the Heart of Character by David Streight

    Breaking into the Heart of Character outlines evidence-based strategies that get past the talk and focuses on teachers' ability to catalyze internal motivation (academic and ethical), social growth and moral climates. The text is less than 100 pages and is written in an approachable style despite numerous research citing.

  2. Discipline for Moral Growth by Marilyn Watson

    The traditional way educators do classroom management and discipline in our schools leaves many students angry, frustrated, unwilling and uninterested in improving future relationships. Through a compelling story of one teacher's efforts, Marilyn outlines a new way to approach discipline that has the power to reduce recidivism rates and nurture ethical leaders. Unless you keep rereading passages because they're so good, it's a powerful but an easy read (less than 50 pages).

  3. Pathmaps by CSEE

    Spiritual development transcends the boundaries of both culture and religion. Pathmaps is a collection of classroom activities that will help you guide teachers though areas of student development such values and beliefs, meaning and purpose, self-knowledge and self-worth within a multi-faith or secular environment (or single-faith, depending on your school). This is a quick read that is written in a practical, reference style so you can focus on one area or quickly refer back to another item in the future.

*In Delta Kappa/Gallup poll (8/2013)


CSEE | 910 M Street NW #722, Washington, DC 20001 | (800) 298-4599



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