115C-81.60. Character education.

(a) Each local board of education shall develop and implement character education instruction with input from the local community. The instruction shall be incorporated into the standard curriculum and should address the following traits:

(1) Courage. - Having the determination to do the right thing even when others don't and the strength to follow your conscience rather than the crowd; and attempting difficult things that are worthwhile.

(2) Good judgment. - Choosing worthy goals and setting proper priorities; thinking through the consequences of your actions; and basing decisions on practical wisdom and good sense.

(3) Integrity. - Having the inner strength to be truthful, trustworthy, and honest in all things; acting justly and honorably.

(4) Kindness. - Being considerate, courteous, helpful, and understanding of others; showing care, compassion, friendship, and generosity; and treating others as you would like to be treated.

(5) Perseverance. - Being persistent in the pursuit of worthy objectives in spite of difficulty, opposition, or discouragement; and exhibiting patience and having the fortitude to try again when confronted with delays, mistakes, or failures.

(6) Respect. - Showing high regard for authority, for other people, for self, for property, and for country; and understanding that all people have value as human beings.

(7) Responsibility. - Being dependable in carrying out obligations and duties; showing reliability and consistency in words and conduct; being accountable for your own actions; and being committed to active involvement in your community.

(8) Self-discipline. - Demonstrating hard work and commitment to purpose; regulating yourself for improvement and restraining from inappropriate behaviors; being in proper control of your words, actions, impulses, and desires; choosing abstinence from premarital sex, drugs, alcohol, and other harmful substances and behaviors; and doing your best in all situations.

(b) In addition to the instruction under subsection (a) of this section, local boards of education are encouraged to include instruction on the following responsibilities:

(1) Respect for school personnel. - In the school environment, respect includes holding teachers, school administrators, and all school personnel in high esteem and demonstrating in words and deeds that all school personnel deserve to be treated with courtesy and proper deference.

(2) Responsibility for school safety. - Helping to create a harmonious school atmosphere that is free from threats, weapons, and violent or disruptive behavior; cultivating an orderly learning environment in which students and school personnel feel safe and secure; and encouraging the resolution of conflicts and disagreements through peaceful means, including peer mediation. Instruction in this responsibility should include a consistent and age-appropriate antiviolence message and a conflict resolution component for students in kindergarten through grade 12. These messages should include media-awareness education to help children recognize stereotypes and messages portraying violence.

(3) Service to others. - Engaging in meaningful service to their schools and their communities. Schools may teach service-learning by (i) incorporating it into their standard curriculum or (ii) involving a classroom of students or some other group of students in one or more hands-on community service projects. All schools are encouraged to provide opportunities for student involvement in community service or service-learning projects.

(4) Good citizenship. - Obeying the laws of the nation and this State; abiding by school rules; and understanding the rights and responsibilities of a member of a republic. (2017-126, s. 5.)