A program evaluation of the character education program at a junior high school in Saint Louis County
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Starting with the Ancient Greeks, Pilgrims, Puritans and Quakers and now all school districts across the United States of America are faced with continually increasing challenges of developing students who are well-rounded human beings capable of making moral and ethical decisions in an ever-increasing immoral and unethical world (Lickona, 1996; Riley, 2001). The purpose of this program evaluation is to examine how association between student-to-student and student-to-teacher, which includes fighting and bullying, disrespect and insubordination, have been affected from the inception of a school-wide character education program to a national character education program recognition. A Pearson's Chi-square test of association was utilized because it is one of the most commonly used statistical approaches to repeated measures designs. The scope of the program evaluation involved a cohort of students in a junior high school in St. Louis County from the inception of a character education program to the National School of Character recognition three years later. Discipline referrals were collected involving aggression, including fighting and bullying, disrespect and insubordination to determine the effect the character education program was having on student-to-student and student-to-teacher relationships. The result of the findings is there was no significant association between these reported behaviors, indicating the variables are independent of each other. This program study indicates there is no significant limitation in the relationship involving discipline referrals from the inception of the character education to the national recognition. This leads to a conclusion that the national recognition may be less concerned about reduction in discipline referrals, and may put more weight on practice, procedures and policy.