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Joel Westheimer Special Event

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The Center for Character and Citizenship


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Joel Westheimer
University of Ottawa
Ontario, Canada

What Kind of Citizen?  Educating Our Children for the Common Good

April 20, 2016

Joel Westheimer Presentation

3 pm - Meet and Greet the Speaker
3 - 5 pm - Presentation
Millennium Student Center (MSC)

Century Room A (3rd Floor)
University of Missouri-St. Louis (directions)

No registration required for the event
Click here to request a parking pass if needed

How can schools teach the skills required for a strong democracy to flourish? Joel Westheimer, in his most recent critically acclaimed book What Kind of Citizen?, asks readers to imagine the kind of society they would like to live in-and then shows the ways in which schools can be used to make that vision a reality. Westheimer draws on groundbreaking research on school programs and policies to sharply critique the current direction of school reform.

About the speaker:
Dr. Joel Westheimer is University Research Chair in Democracy and Education at the University of Ottawa. He is also the education columnist for CBC Radio’s Ottawa Morning and Ontario Today shows. He began his career teaching in the New York City Public School system before obtaining a Ph.D. from Stanford University. He is currently directing (with John Rogers, UCLA) The Inequality Project, investigating what schools in North America are teaching about economic inequality. Westheimer lives in Ottawa, Ontario with his wife and two children and a dog named Farley. In Winter, he ice-skates to and from work. Farley stays home.

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What Works in Character Education Database


What Works in Character Education Database

What Works in Character Education represents an effort to uncover and synthesize existing scientific research on the effects of K-12 character education. It is made up of a brief overview of the project, a description of the main findings, a set of guidelines on effective character education practice,and some brief cautionary remarks regarding how to interpret these findings. It is intended to provide practical advice for educators derived from a review of the research. You can access the database here.


Character and the Common Core


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The Common Core State Standardsis a challenging set content specific expectations and practice standards that increase rigor, relevance, and focus on acquisition of 21st century global skills students need for success in a global economy and world. Ironically, the Standards do not identify the dispositions, qualities of character and social-emotional learning skills required of students for success within this rigorous set of standards. Schools must identify and explicitly teach the knowledge, skills, and dispositions necessary for students to achieve success in a post-secondary setting.

The Common Core State Standards goals include preparing students for college, career, and civic readiness. Character development and social-emotional skills are the critical foundation students need to meet those goals.

The Common Core State Standards acknowledges that it does not explicitly identify the multi-tiered supports, programs, and curriculum schools must implement for student growth and success, but does acknowledge that schools must make local decisions to support these goals. This project, entitled, "Can character education increase successful implementation of the Common Core State Standards for Mathematics," is aimed at identifying those supports, programs, and curriculum schools can use to develop student social-emotional learning skills within the framework of educating to the standards.


pdf-128 Common Core State Standards Whitepaper


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