District 321 recognized as Aspiring School of Character

Staff Writer
Chillicothe Times-Bulletin

University of Illinois Extension recently announced that Illinois Valley Central School District 321 was selected as an Aspiring School District of Character. 

School district staff recently combined efforts to submit an application to the University of Illinois Extension for the Illinois State Schools of Character Awards. 

Hinsdale Central High, Hinsdale, and Franklin Elementary School, Belleville, were selected as 2008 Illinois State Schools of Character.

IVC school district was recognized as an Aspiring School of Character, along with Parkside Primary Center, Bethalto, and Lewis and Clark Elementary School, Wood River. 

Illinois State School of Character Awards recognize schools or districts that demonstrate an outstanding character education initiative that yields positive results in student behavior, school climate and academic performance.

The Illinois State School of Character winners are then eligible to advance to the National Schools of Character competition sponsored by Character Education Partnership.

Illinois State Schools of Character winners and aspiring schools will be honored by University of Illinois Extension at the Illinois Leadership Conference June 11 in Champaign.

IVC School District was recognized for its character building efforts, such as the Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports (PBIS) at Chillicothe Elementary Center and Mossville School, the Good Citizenship and Courtesy Program at South School and IMPACT, Freshmen Challenge and Senior Retreat at IVC High School. 

IVC also offers innovative programs for behavior, such as the Stop and Think program. 

Evidence that programs are working is shown in a reduction of office discipline referrals in grades K-8 from a high of 2,380 referrals in 2003-04 down to 788 referrals in 2006-07. 

Mix-It-Up Day, Red Ribbon Week, CEC’s Pillars of Character and the service projects of IVC students, such as the Homeless Sleep-out, Habitat for Humanity and Cystic Fibrosis Week, added to the district’s mix of character-building activities. 

The district also offers an options program designed to help students improve both academic and behavior skills.