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Virginia Department of Education Abstract

Contact: Marsha Owens
Virginia Department of Education
Special Education and Student Services
101 North 14th Street
PO Box 2120
Richmond, VA 23213
(804) 225–2928

The Virginia Character Education Project

Application Number: R215V000007
Project Period: 7/1/00–6/30/03
FY 2000 Award: $333,333
FY 2001 Award: $333,334
FY 2002 Award: $333,333

The Virginia Department of Education and the school division (LEA) partners of Albemarle County, Fairfax County, and Stafford County Public Schools will engage in the planning, implementation, evaluation, and dissemination of comprehensive K???12 character education programs. The selected implementation sites provide opportunities to pilot the character education concepts and strategies in metropolitan, outer-ring suburban and rural settings.

Virginia provides its school divisions with a great deal of autonomy, coupling that concept with the view of the Character Education Partnership that "There is no single design for effective character education." The grantee proposed a project model that empowers each of the LEAs to design, implement, and evaluate a program development effort that responds to the unique needs of the local community. Research has shown that those models that provide for a high degree of local ownership tend to be more successful in achieving their outcomes

In this 3-year project, the schools will begin by building programs that reflect the character traits that they want embodied in their students at the time of high school graduation. Although quite different in their specific design and implementation strategies, all sites will employ the Eleven Principles of Effective Character Education as a guideline for program development and materials selection.

The Virginia Department of Education will provide leadership and support through a state steering committee, a project director and a new part-time position designed to nurture character education program development statewide by disseminating best practices and building program linkages with the safe schools initiative and other efforts to enhance school culture.

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Last Modified: 11/08/2011