April 2014: Trustworthiness



Trustworthiness is the ability to earn the future trust of another person by being honest and accurate about past facts. A person is considered truthful by continually giving accurate reports. Being a truthful person is a constant action, not something that is infrequent. Trustworthiness extends beyond a person’s words; his or her actions are as, or sometimes more, important than a person’s words.


“Honesty is always the best policy”


-George Washington, 1st President of the United States of America

 Selected Readings

Book  Author
Eleanor Roosevelt: A Life of Discovery Russell Freedman
The Lincolns Candace Fleming
Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry Mildred D. Taylor
Charlotte’s Web E. B. White
Koa’s Seed Carolyn Han
The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian Sherman Alexie


Profiles in Trustworthiness


Ralph David Abernathy

Ralph David Abernathy was one of the most prominent civil rights leaders during the 1950s and 1960s. After serving in the United States Army and receiving a degree from Alabama State University and Atlanta University, Ralph served side by side with Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. on many protests and boycotts. Dr. King once called Ralph, “the best friend that I have in the world.” Ralph’s loyalty and dedication to equal treatment for everyone showed a tremendous amount of character.


Susan B. Anthony

Susan B. Anthony was a social reformer, who along with Elizabeth Cady Stanton became the face of the women’s suffrage movement. She fought tirelessly throughout her life to improve the rights of women. In addition to fighting for women’s rights, Susan was an abolitionist who opposed slavery. She even helped Harriet Tubman on the Underground Railroad. Her efforts eventually led to women earning the right to vote.


George Washington

George Washington, the 1st President of the United States of America, is often referred to as the father of our country. In addition to being the first commander in chief of the continental army, he also presided over the Constitutional Convention, where the United States Constitution was created and ratified. President Washington was well-known for being exceptionally honest. There is even the tale of George Washington chopping down a cherry tree when he was a child and telling the truth when he was confronted by his father.



CEMG Provider Vetting Underway

The Character Education Matching Grant Application for Pre-Approved Vendors has closed and the Character Education Department has begun vetting applicants. Pre-approved vendors will be posted to the ADE Website on Monday, April 28, 2014. The application process will open for schools on Thursday, May 1, 2014. If you have any questions or concerns regarding the Character Education Matching Grant, contact program specialist Michael Elliott at michael.elliott@azed.gov or (602) 364-0103.

Character Education Information Seminar This Thursday


The Arizona Department of Education Character Education Department will be having a Character Education Matching Grant seminar for all Local Education Agencies this Thursday, April 3, 2014 at our central office, located at 3300 North Central Avenue, Phoenix, Arizona 85014. Attendees have the option of attending either the 10:00 AM session or the 1:00 session. Each session is expected to last an hour and a half. To RSVP to a session, please email program specialist Michael Elliott at michael.elliott@azed.gov.

Stuntmasters Uses BMX To Teach Character

PHOENIX, Arizona -

If you ask John Parker, he might tell you that every problem in the world can be solved with a bike. However, he may be on to something when it comes to teaching kids about character. John Parker’s Stuntmasters and their BMX Impact Action Sports Motivational Assembly uses action sports and its appeal to children to teach kids about varying topics, to include everything from character development to bike safety and maintenance. The Arizona Department of Education Character Education department recently had the pleasure of seeing Stuntmasters in action at Cherokee Elementary School in Paradise Valley. John, along with Jonny Harnisch, performed for 45 minutes to a student body of about 250 students, who were engaged the entire time as John and Jonny taught them about character traits like caring, citizenship, and respect. This is truly a program that is on a “roll.” For more information about Stuntmasters, contact John Parker at (480) BMX-RAMP (269-7267) or e-mail at BMXImpact@gmail.com. You can also visit their website at www.bmximpact.com.

2014-2015 Provider Applications Now Being Accepted

Attention all Character Education Providers,

The pre-approval application for the 2014-2015 Arizona Department of Education Character Education Matching Grant is now open. Organizations that provide character education curriculum, pursuant to A.R.S. 15-154.01, can apply to be pre-approved as a vendor for the Character Education Matching Grant. Pre-approval is mandatory for providers wishing to participate in the Character Education Matching Grant program for the 2014-2015 school year.  To apply, prospective providers must fill out the following form, print it, sign it, scan it, and email it to program specialist, Michael Elliott (michael.elliott@azed.gov), no later than Friday, March 28, 2014 at 5:00 PM, MST.

2014-2015 Character Education Matching Grant Provider Application

If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact Michael Elliott, program specialist at (602) 364-1971 or at michael.elliott@azed.gov.

March 2014: Virtue


“One of the virtues of being very young is that you don’t let facts get in the way of your imagination.” The American humorist Sam Levenson once said that. When we typically think of virtues, we think of our positive qualities and what good things we want from our lives. Virtue is actually our high moral standards and how we strive to do the right things in our everyday lives. Webster’s Dictionary defines virtue as “having morally good behavior or character.” That is why we believe that character is an important part of our lives! Virtuous people try every day to make the world a better place.


Virtuous Americans – Past and Present

Abraham Lincoln, 16th President of the United States

President Lincoln was one of the most beloved presidents in the history of our great country! He strived to bring us together by eliminating slavery with the passing of the Emancipation Proclamation. He also wanted every American to have the opportunity to go to college, so he created the Morrill Act, which created land-grant colleges all over the country to include Iowa State University, the University of Georgia, and even the University of Arizona! Abraham Lincoln believed that all men were created equal and that liberty should be for everyone.


Thurgood Marshall, Former Supreme Court Justice

Thurgood Marshall was known as the first Black United States Supreme Court Justice. However, Thurgood was much, much more. He was a champion of civil rights for all people, regardless of race, color, or gender. “In recognizing the humanity of our fellow beings, we pay ourselves the highest tribute.” Marshall fought to overturn Plessy v. Ferguson, which allowed segregation in the United States. He argued for equal rights in Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka.


Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, U.S. House of Representatives

Congresswoman Ros-Lehtinen was the first Latina to be elected to the United States Congress. Ileana immigrated to the United States when she was young, escaping the Communist forces of Cuba. and became an advocate of human rights around the world. She also has campaigned tirelessly to promote equal rights and fair treatment for everyone.   



Character Education Exhibits at the AALD Symposium




PHOENIX, Arizona – The Arizona Department of Education Character Education Team was able to set up at the 2014 African American Symposium on Living with Disabilities, held on Friday, February 28, 2014 at the Desert Willow Conference Center. Deputy Associate Superintendent Dr. Ann Hart was a featured speaker. Along with Dr. Tracy Williams, they spoke about why third graders were failing and what we could do to reverse those negative trends. Additionally, Program Specialist Michael Elliott and Administrative Assistant JoAnne McCoy were able to set up a table during break sessions. This allowed them to spread awareness of character education.


To see more photos from the AALD Symposium, click here to check out our Facebook album.

BET-C Conference Showcases Character


February 20, 2014

PHOENIX, Arizona – The Arizona Department of Education Character Education Team had the pleasure of attending the 2014 Behavior, Education, and Technology Conference this past week at the Desert Willow Conference Center in Phoenix. Attending the conference gave the Character Education Department the opportunity to showcase its program to various school administrators, curriculum directors, staff developers, technology coordinators, superintendents, principals, K-12 teachers, special educators, psychologists, counselors, social workers, mental health professionals, charter schools, private schools, alternative schools, college professors, and policy makers from all levels of government. In addition to showcasing the program and the Character Education Matching Grant, program administrators Michael Elliott and JoAnne McCoy encouraged table visitors to choose which of the seventeen character education attributes were the most important in their everyday lives. The results of the poll will be posted on the program’s Twitter account within the next week.



Visitors were also treated to a panel, detailing the nuances of Positive Behavioral Intervention and Supports (PBIS) District Funding by Dr. Ann Hart, Deputy Associate Superintendent of African-American Outreach, Character, Homeless, and Refugee Education, Oran Tkatchov, Director of Professional Development for Exceptional Student Services, and Jean Ajamie, Director of School Safety and Prevention for the Arizona Department of Education.

 To see more photos from the BET-C, click here to check out our Facebook album.

February 2014: Wisdom

February 2014



Our attribute for this month is wisdom. Wisdom is typically an attribute that denotes maturity and poise. Being wise doesn’t necessarily mean being the smartest person. Being wise means that you have used your intellect, as well as your understanding and life experiences to have a different perspective than those who are unwise. Virtually all of our American heroes, both past and present, were wise and used their wisdom to make our country great.

Attribute Quote

“Before we acquire great power, we must acquire wisdom to use it well.



Ralph Waldo Emerson

Ralph Waldo Emerson


Featured Reading




The Pot of Wisdom: Ananse Stories

By Adwoa Badoe








January 2014: Responsibility

January 2014




Responsibility is the state or fact that you have a duty or obligation to something or someone. A responsible person can be trusted to complete tasks without supervision. A responsible person acts with integrity and does not lie about things. A responsible person accepts blame for things that are their fault and work to make their lives and the lives of those around them better.With great power comes great responsibility.

Attribute Quote

The price of greatness is responsibility.


Sir Winston Churchill


Featured Readings



 The Value of Responsibility: The Story of Ralph Bunche

By Ann Donegan Johnson