For Crestwood Elementary School’s ongoing programs to recognize good sportsmanship, encourage appreciation of cultures and develop friendships among grade levels, the school has been named a 2011 Missouri School of Character by the Character Education Partnership, or CEP, and a semifinalist for the National School of Character honor.
In addition, 2010 Missouri School of Character Lindbergh High School has been named a semifinalist for the national honor. Lindbergh Schools, a National District of Character, currently has three National Schools of Character — Long, Sappington and Kennerly elementary schools.
Besides exemplifying exceptional character, Crestwood Elementary School is ranked No. 4 in Missouri for academics among all elementary schools and is one of eight schools statewide that have been invited to apply for the 2011 Blue Ribbon Schools Program. The U.S. Department of Education’s Blue Ribbon Schools Program honors public and private elementary, middle and high schools that are either high performing or have improved student achievement to high levels, especially among disadvantaged students.
Such creative character programs as Character at Play, grade-level buddy activities, Crestlandia Character Café and an annual cultural celebration play an integral role in students’ overall development and growth, according to Principal Scott Taylor. The Character at Play kickball game teaches good sportsmanship while Crestwood’s cultural celebration allows students to “travel the globe” in the school gymnasium and learn about their fellow students, who represent 16 nationalities. Character Café teaches pupils the importance of good manners.
“During the past six years Crestwood has increased our focus on character education,” Taylor stated in a district news release. “Activities such as buddy classes, class meetings and our Character Club have become key ingredients in our school culture. Character Education has had a tremendous impact on our student achievement, helping us to become a 2009 Missouri Gold Star School and a 2011 National Blue Ribbon School Nominee.”
Missouri School of Character awards recognize the level of excellence schools and districts have achieved in the 11 Principles of Effective Character Education.
These principles, the National Standard for Character Education, guide the process of creating a culture based on a community’s shared values.