What is CHARACTERplus?
CHARACTERplus was a program adopted by the Independence School District in 2008. The purpose of CHARACTERplus is to emphasize positive character traits in all areas of a student's life.
In 2008, parents, community members, teachers and counselors gathered together to determine "traits of the month" that they believe reinforce the positive character traits already being taught in many homes.
The traits are blended into the curriculum, extracurricular activities, and are displayed throughout the community. The Independence School District believes that modeling character traits may be the most effective way of passing them on to students. Studies in schools with similar programs have noted significant positive changes in office referrals, parent relations and school leadership.
How Can I Support CHARACTERplus?
Just click below to sign up as a supporter of CHARACTERplus. You will receive signs each month that you can print out and put in your home or business, get updates on CHARACTERplus in the schools and in the community, and get a copy of the Student of Character logo to print out on your stationery or business correspondence, or set as your screen saver. In addition, parents should feel free to contact their school to see how they can help support CHARACTERplus. If you are a business or organization wanting to display a banner, adopt a school, or sponsor Word of the Month billboards, contact Public Relations Director Nancy Lewis.
Traits of the Month
January: RESPECT - to show consideration to self and others
February: COOPERATION - to respectfully play and work with others
March: INITIATIVE - to act and make decisions on your own
April: PERSEVERANCE - to continue trying in spite of difficulties
May: SELF-CONTROL - to express your feelings in an appropriate manner
June: COURAGE - to remain strong when faced with difficulty
July: LOYALTY - to be faithful to a person, a team or an idea
August: AMBITION - to have strong determination to accomplish goals
September: RESPONSIBILITY - to be accountable for your actions
October: INTEGRITY - to do the right thing
November: CITIZENSHIP - to be a productive and responsible resident
December: COMPASSION - to understand the challenges of others and to want to do something about it
Business, Faith, and Civic Organizations
Are you a community member, business leader, or an organization that wants to help create a Community of Character? It's easy! You can donate your time or dollars to support CHARACTERplus in our schools. CHARACTERplus teaches students of all ages how to be good community members by promoting character in all facets of life!
Community Member of Character for the Quarter
Do you know someone in the community who deserves to win the Dr. Bob Community Member of Character Award?
The nominee must live or work in Independence but cannot work for the school district.
You can turn in a nomination by filling out the form below. Each quarter, nominations will focus on three character traits, and how well nominees portray one of those traits.
You can turn in a nomination by completing this survey.
Centerpoint Medical Center honored as the Dr. Bob Community of Character Award winner for the Third quarter
Centerpoint Medical Center was nominated at the community award winner for the third quarter showing Respect, Cooperation and Initiative.
About 15 Independence businesses have partnered with schools this year to promote character education. The local businesses and organizations that agreed to be Fans of Dr. Bob were given a school to work with through the school year. Those organizations have had the opportunity to create an atmosphere that focuses on demonstrating characteristics that make the entire community a better place to live. Centerpoint Medical Center partners with Benton Elementary and Truman High School.
Mary Lippe is named the Dr. Bob Community of Character Winner
Mary Lippe was named the Dr. Bob Community of Character Winner for the 2nd Quarter. Lippe was recognized for exhibiting, Integrity, Citizenship and Compassion.
To watch the video of how she helps students at Ott Elementary click here.
Lippe volunteers at Ott Elementary School and is dedicated to the Box Tops and Labels for Education programs.
She collects, sorts and turns in Box Top Labels and through her hard work and the donations she has helped Ott Elementary receive a SMART board, laminator, and teacher work room supplies. She purchases Kansas City Star newspapers to clip coupons and encourages families to participate.
If you want to learn more about the Box Top Program and how you can help click here.
Pat Short is the newest Dr. Bob Community Member of Character Winner
Pat Short is the Dr. Bob Community Member of Character Winner for the first quarter of the 2012-2013 school year. Short was nominated for the years of service and support she has provided for the Independence School District students.
Short has been involved with the ISD since her daughter was in kindergarten in 1962. Over the decades Short has served on PTAs, organized libraries, has been a substitute teacher and most recently started a program that provides personalized books for thousands of students.
Short started the personalized book program with Hanthorn students in 1998. She now prepares books for 3-5 year old students with their name in the story and every year hands out close to 500 personalized books.
In the nomination letter the writer described Short as, “dedicated and truly loyal to children and her community.”
The character traits for the first quarter are loyalty, ambition and responsibility. For portraying those character traits Short was awarded the Dr. Bob Community Member of Character title.
Bill Newton is the Community Member of Character for the Fourth Quarter
Bill Newton is the Dr. Bob Community Member of Character Award Winner for the fourth quarter. The character traits for the fourth quarter are: Perseverance, Self-Control and Courage.
Newton is dedicated when it comes to the kids of the Independence School District. Bill volunteers for Youth Friends at Nowlin Middle School and Fairmount Elementary School, and gives over 40 to 50 hours per month mentoring students. He has persevered through caring for an ailing wife, and after her passing, Bill chose to use his time to volunteer and be a positive role model. According to those who work with Bill, he always has a smile on his face and no matter what the situation is he practices courage, patience, perseverance and self-control.
Charles Miller Jr. is the Community Member of Character for the Third Quarter
Charles Miller Jr., a William Chrisman graduate, is named the "Dr. Bob Community Member of Character Winner” for the third quarter.
Miller was selected as an outstanding community member for the time and dedication to character building he provides for an Independence Boy Scout troop.
Miller is the Scoutmaster for Troop 203 and has worked with the troop for the past 20 years.
His motto is to give the community's youth the tools to be productive citizens.
Diane Johnson-Bennett who nominated Miller said, "even though his son made his Eagle Scout over 10 years ago, he still gives his time to this organization. He instills the importance of honor, respect, how to be cooperative with others to take the initiative to lead when their needs to be a leader. "
Chuck is an Engineer Manager for Tooling at Calmar Industries. His job requires a lot of traveling, but he still makes the time to work with boy scouts.
For the past 20 years he has also taught at Metropolitan Community College in the evenings.
Diane Johnson-Bennett said, "Over the last five years I have seen Chuck take young men under his wing to guide them in the direction to finish their Eagle, continue their education or find the right fit in the work world."
Miller is a 1978 graduate of William Chrisman High School and both of his children also graduated from Chrisman.
Diane Johnson-Bennett said Miller did not know he was nominated.
"He does not do this for recognition but truly for the youth of an area where several boys in the troop only have a mom, he has put together a crew of leaders that give these young men a well rounded male leadership and mentors," explained Johnson-Bennett
The character traits highlighted in this quarter are respect, cooperation and initiative.
Norma Tibbets is the Community Member of Character for the Second Quarter
Norma Tibbetts is the Dr. Bob Community Member of Character Award Winner for the second quarter. Norma is compassionate when it comes to the kids of the Independence School District. Norma and her group of volunteers work tirelessly to make sure students in need have new shoes, clothes, coats, and underwear. The clothes are provided through Tabitha's Closet at the First Christian Church. She's there sometimes with just a smile or hug for the parent letting them know that there are people in Independence who are there for them and care. Norma is the type of person who would say "it takes a village to clothe a child" but without her determination and compassion Tabitha's closet would not be available.
Lisa Temple-Young is the Community Member of Character for the First Quarter
Temple-Young is full of ambition! She deserves recognition for realizing ambitious dreams for our community. When doctors told her years ago that she had months left to live...first she beat cancer then she chose to devote her life to our community. She is a passionate full-time volunteer serving the Independence community through her leadership, officially with Van Horn LINC Caring Communities and the Sugar Creek Optimists, and additionally with anyone she encounters who has a need. Serving as Van Horn Caring Communities LINC Site Council Chair for over a decade, she has not only made her dreams for the community come true, she's helped others realize their own ambitions. Her leadership and involvement with that Site Council brought about many great things including the Fairmount Community Center and North West Development Corporation. Her ambition guided her to take the lead in developing many other initiatives. She founded a 501c3 to create the Kids 4 Cure Cancer Walk. She spearheaded the Green Thumb Club Community Garden. She runs the Van Horn Community Food Pantry organizing food drives, holiday baskets, food deliveries, and more. She is always sharing her ambition by teaching in her community. She is currently teaching life skills to a group of young adult women weekly at Van Horn High School. She has devoted her life to the betterment of the people of Independence, and she will continue to share her ambitions for the rest of her life.