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The First Step

Let Us Help Customize Your Character Journey!

Your school’s character journey takes work and coordination from multiple directions. But where do you start?

Making changes in schools, educating parents, and empowering young people are just some of the important parts of creating a culture of character. Most schools do not become a National School of Character overnight, but methodically work at it over time, trying new ideas and keeping what works. Explore the options below to find out how you can support better futures for kids in your community.

Please download our Guide to Applying for an overview of the Schools of Character process.

Contact Our Schools Of Character Director, Lori Soifer

Reach out to Lori Soifer to learn more about the School Of Character process and to discuss first steps and how to customize your schools character journey.

You can reach her at lori@character.org.

Attend Our Annual International Forum

Our International Forum will bring together hundreds of educators passionate about character with real-world experience on transforming a schools culture. Connect and begin networking with school leaders who have already put the 11 Principles successfully into action.

Understand Each of The 11 Principles

Schools of Character are selected based on their implementation of the 11 Principles Framework. Learn about how each principle will help your school develop a comprehensive approach to character development and how they shape your character journey.

Build Your Character Team

Whether it’s a task force or a committee, SOC schools are guided by a group of committed stakeholders that include faculty, parents, students, and community members.

Conduct An 11 Principles Self-Assessment

School teams examine current character practices aligned to each Principle. Reflect on the good things you are already doing! Seeing where you are now can help you decide what steps to take next. Self-assesment and scoring guide

Integrate A Practice Or Two From Your Self-Assessment

School teams create short- and long-term objectives for implementation that help strengthen their character development work.

Submit A Promising Practice

Character.org annually recognizes specific classroom or school-wide initiatives and practices that are based on one or more of the 11 Principles. This is a great step for schools who have been working hard! Click here to learn more about Promising Practices.

Work With A Character Trainer Or Coach

Reach out to Tamra Nast, our Director of Training & Coaching to learn how Character.org can support your school. She loves helping schools learn about the 11 Principles! You can contact her at tamra@character.org.

Conduct An 11 Principles Mock Audit

The Mock Audit can be done at any point prior to submitting an application for certification. Schools receive robust, professional feedback on their overall character initiative and can use the audit as a roadmap for strengthening their application.

For more information contact Tamra Nasttamra@character.org.

Meet Lori Soifer

Director, National Schools of Character
My character journey began on April 21, 1999, the day after Columbine. With three other moms, I started a Campaign for Safe Homes in my school district. Soon after, I was asked to join the district’s strategic planning committee, and in 2000, fostering a culture of character became a district goal. I found my passion and was elected to my school board in 2005. During my 9 years as a Board of Education trustee, most of the schools in my district received their National Schools of Character certification. Shortly after I left the Board of Education, our school district was recognized as a National School District of Character. I have seen, firsthand, how this process positively impacts the lives of students, educators, families and school communities. I encourage you to learn more about becoming a School of Character.