National School of Character

CHARACTER EDUCATION AT STONY BROOK SCHOOL,

A 2019 NATIONAL SCHOOL OF CHARACTER

WHAT IS A NATIONAL SCHOOL OF CHARACTER?

Stony Brook School is proud to announce that it has been named a 2019 National School of Character. It is the first school in the Rockaway Township School District to attain this prestigious designation and one of only 87 schools and 3 districts earning this honor in 2019. Our school retains this title for five years, after which we must apply to be recertified.

This distinction is granted by Character.org* to schools and districts that demonstrate a dedicated focus on character development which has a positive effect on academic achievement, student behavior and school climate. Districts and schools are assessed based on Character.org’s 11 Principles of Effective Character Education, which include providing students with opportunities for moral action, fostering shared leadership and engaging families and communities as partners in the character-building effort. A rigorous evaluation process started with Stony Brook’s submitting a written narrative with evidence and data. Once we were named a New Jersey School of Character, we had the opportunity to apply for national designation. A site visit by a team of trained national evaluators determined if we were worthy to receive that designation.

*Character.org is a nonprofit organization that advocates for the advancement of character development in communities, schools and workplaces,


STONY BROOK IS ALSO A

2019 NEW JERSEY SCHOOL OF CHARACTER

 

The first step in becoming certified as a National School of Character is being recognized as a New Jersey School of Character. Our school underwent a rigorous application process in which we demonstrated how we addressed each one of the Eleven Principles of Effective Character Education, the proven framework for developing a School of Character.

CHARACTER EDUCATION AT STONY BROOK SCHOOL

Rockaway Township Public Schools has a long history of promoting social and emotional learning in its mission statement and programs, and Stony Brook Elementary School has been in the vanguard of this movement, establishing its own character education program in 2012, guided by 4 core values; Be Fair, Be Kind, Be Respectful, and Be Your Best. When our district, guided by a new superintendent, placed a renewed emphasis on character-building and gathered its stakeholders who chose H.E.A.R.T. (Honesty, Empathy, Acceptance, Respect and Trust), our school readily made the transition. In fact, the performance value, EFFORT, which is needed to keep the heart going, dovetailed very nicely with our mantra, Be Your Best. With the help of a character consultant, Rockaway moved full steam ahead in giving us professional development to help us make these values a way of life. We will continue to hone our many effective practices and strive to be a beacon for the district. We are ready for this next chapter of our journey.

 

SOME PRACTICES THAT KEEP OUR H.E.A.R.T. TICKING

Morning Meetings

Responsive Classroom Strategies

PBSIS Strategies

“Kids Teaching Kids” the Core Values

Buddy Classes

Role Plays

Conflict Resolution training

“I Messages”

“Talk It Out” Tables

Peace Desks

Teaching Five NJDOE Social/Emotional Learning Competencies

Pledge to Follow the Golden Reef

Talent Show

Behavior Disabilities Orientation

PBSIS Training, Responsive Classroom Professional Development

Community Learning Time for Faculty Meetings

Anti-Bullying Assemblies

“Don’t Press Send”

“Kids on the Block” presentation

“Lunch Bunch”

Recess Tutoring Sessions

Reading Rockets Tutoring

Improving School Courtyard Service-Learning

Harvesting Vegetables from School Garden Service-Learning