Core Value Guide for Grades 6-12

See below for detailed explanations of each core value.


  • Thinks outside the box
    • Rationale: Divergent thinking is essential for arriving upon inventive ways of presenting ideas an/or unique problems
    • Examples: Invents new ways of presenting ideas, or draws unique connections between different contents.
  • Presents fresh solutions to problems
    • Rationale: Offering a new perspective on possible resolutions through an evidence-based explanation, after a thorough examination of a particular issue.
    • Examples: Students pose authentic solutions to real-world design problems.
  • Expresses ideas in unique ways
    • Rationale: In the field of modern education, unique approaches to unfamiliar ideas and concepts is encouraged. While responses may deviate from a traditional format or structure, the conclusions, explanations, and elaborations accurately arrive upon the pertinent information from the lesson.
    • Examples: Able to express ideas through metaphors and analogies.
  • Thinks and acts independently
    • Rationale: An essential part of the educational process is the development of independent thought and action above and beyond articulated expectations and regulations. Can articulate a rational explanation for individualizing the learning process.
    • Examples: Expands parameters of the assigned task (i.e. revising a graphic organizer to meet individual needs).


  • Demonstrates Self-Advocacy
    • Rationale: The ability of an individual to effectively and respectfully communicate to those in authority, is an essential skill for personal success. Seeking clarification and engaging in active questioning leads to more effective and efficient collaboration, improved institutional culture, and less frustration.
    • Examples: Seeks support inside and outside of class time (Wildcat/Flex/afterschool).
  • Is Punctual and Timely
    • Rationale: Arriving at an expected location and completing expected tasks within a reasonable timeframe displays a strong sense of respect and responsibility critical to success.
    • Examples: Arrives to class or scheduled activities on time; completes work in the expected timeframe; uses class time effectively and efficiently.
  • Organizes and prepares for learning
    • Rationale: Thoughtful organizational processes dramatically impact an individual's ability to learn. People who consistently display these attributes are able to thoroughly engage in the growth and collaboration processes necessary for academic development.
    • Examples: Digital resources and/or notebook are labeled and ordered to improve efficiency; has materials needed for the day’s lesson.
  • Engages actively in learning activities
    • Rationale: Active participation assures that an individual will gain the most from the experience. Immersing oneself in the learning activity maximizes the academic impact.
    • Examples: Engages actively in class discussion, without dominating; participates cooperatively in groups; asks and responds to questions.


  • Observes expectations of ‘academic integrity’
    • Rationale: In order to engage completely in the learning experience, an individual must present original work and independently arrived upon conclusions. While the quoting of expert sources is a pivotal part of any research process, they should be utilized as evidence to support one’s position and not appropriated as original work.
    • Examples: Acknowledges the use of others’ words, work or ideas using proper citation conventions in the production of individual work; completes work independently as assigned.
  • Adheres to class rules
    • Rationale: Any occupational environment establishes expectations to ensure an efficient and respectful work environment. The observance of these affords each participant to fully engage in the learning presented in the lesson and to safely participate in learning activities.
    • Examples: Obeys laboratory protocols and other rules as established by the class/classroom teacher.
  • Strives continuously for improvement
    • Rationale: The fundamental purpose of education is academic growth, and while each student has individual areas of strength and areas of need, it is necessary to remain focused on individual betterment. While this may take many forms, it is readily apparent when someone is driven towards personal enhancement.
    • Examples: Seeks extra help when needed; engages willingly in revision of writing; retakes tests for the sake of learning and demonstrating mastery of the material.
  • Reflects actively on learning
    • Rationale: A constant and consistent contemplation on one’s own learning is what guides thoughtful inquiries and earnest discourse on areas for potential growth. A reexamination of newly learned content is essential to progress towards mastery.
    • Examples: Reviews tests and assignments to understand errors or gaps in understanding; looks back on performance in class activities to determine areas for growth.


  • Treats others with respect
    • Rationale: When working within a group, individuals must comport themselves in a respectful manner in order to maintain an honest dialogue with their team. Respectful disagreement and expression of ideas are important to maintain any team or collaborative dynamic.
    • Examples: Utilizes appropropriate language for challenging the ideas of other students in class; invites others to contribute to discussions; respects the property of teachers and classmates.
  • Treats authority with respect
    • Rationale: Students engage in respectful and meaningful interactions with classroom teachers and school administrators within the context of the classroom and school functions.
    • Examples: Utilizes appropropriate language and behavior for challenging the ideas of administrators, teachers, counselors, coaches, school staff, etc.
  • Minds school rules
    • Rationale: Guidelines for behavior are necessary for the sound management of any institution or enterprise. An efficient and orderly structure is necessary for maintaining an academic decorum best suited for learning and open dialogue between students, their instructors, and building administration.
    • Examples: Adheres to Acceptable Use Policy (Technology); follows rules as outlined in the Handbook.
  • Handles school property appropriately
    • Rationale: Students understand the value of the instructional materials and equipment they have been provided with to support their learning.
    • Examples: Utilizes school equipment and property in an appropriate manner; returns in a similar condition in which it was issued.


High Expectations

  • Identifies areas for personal growth
    • Rationale: Possessing a degree of self-awareness is a crucial component of emotional intelligence. Without a sufficient understanding of self, it is difficult to either improve or respond effectively to others.
    • Examples: Reflects upon areas for growth; sets short- and long-term goals for improvement.
  • Motivated intrinsically
    • Rationale: Learning any new concept or skill requires a certain degree of personal motivation in order to successfully master the new content. Whether it be the development of personal goals, the learning of something of particular interest, or the building of interpersonal relationship between student and teacher, engagement and motivation are essential to any self-improvement experience.
    • Examples: Demonstrates a desire to learn for the sake of learning; enjoys the learning process; connects learning to personal aspirations.
  • Strives to progress in academic standards
    • Rationale: A major component of the learning process involves self-reflection. Taking the time to assess one’s own learning to determine areas for improvement and brainstorm strategies to support ongoing learning will promote opportunities to build competency toward a set of learning expectations.
    • Examples: Effectively utilizes self- and peer assessment opportunities on class assignments and projects to highlight areas of strength and a focus for growth.
  • Displays persistence and perseverance
    • Rationale: Obstacles and trials are an ever-present part of life, and a major component of individual’s growth. Development centers around how one manages and overcomes these difficulties. Challenging previously held notions is essential in the learning process. Those who engage in new learning must be willing to face these challenges and seek out avenues for personal success.
    • Examples: Checks work for accuracy and completion prior to submission; engages productively with difficult work.

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