Policy 8242


Civility, Citizenship, and Character Education

The Board recognizes that teaching students respect, civility and understanding toward others, as well as the practice and reinforcement of appropriate behavior and values of our society, is an important function of the District.

The District wishes to foster an environment where students exhibit behavior that promotes positive educational practices, allows students to grow socially and academically, and encourages healthy dialogue in respectful ways. By presenting teachers and staff as positive role models, the District stresses positive communication and discourages disrespectful treatment. This policy is not intended to deprive and/or restrict any student of his or her right to freedom of expression but, rather, seeks to maintain, to the extent possible and reasonable, a safe, harassment free and educationally conducive environment for our students and staff.

Furthermore, the District will ensure that the course of instruction in grades K through 12 includes a component on civility, citizenship, and character education in accordance with Education Law, with an emphasis on discouraging acts of harassment, bullying, and/or discrimination. Character education is the deliberate effort to help students understand, care about, and act upon core ethical values.

Character education will instruct students on the principles of:

a) Honesty;
b) Tolerance;
c) Personal responsibility;
d) Respect for others;
e) Awareness and sensitivity to discrimination and/or harassment as defined in the Dignity for All Students Act;
f) Civility in relation to people of different races, weights, national origins, ethnic groups, religions, religious practices, physical or mental abilities, sexual orientations, genders or sexes;
g) Observance of laws and rules;
h) Courtesy; 
i) Dignity, and other traits which will enhance the quality of students' experiences in, and contributions to, the community; and
j) Safe and responsible use of the Internet and electronic communications.

As determined by the Board of Regents, and as further enumerated in Commissioner's regulations, the components of character education will be incorporated in existing District curricula as applicable.

The District encourages the involvement of staff, students, parents, and community members in the implementation and reinforcement of character education in the schools.

Interpersonal Violence Prevention Education

The District may utilize any interpersonal violence prevention education package made available by the State Education Department. These materials may be incorporated as part of the health or other related curricula or programs for students in grades K through 12.

Policy References:
Education Law §§ 801, 801-a, and 804(4)
8 NYCRR §§ 100.2(c)(2),(c)(6)

Adopted: 6/22/99
Revised: 9/6/22

Policy 8242