School board gives OK to teach 'values' in class


The county schools will launch a "core values" program in classrooms this year to teach students in all grades about compassion, global responsibility, honesty, respect for human dignity and other principles.

The program was recommended by a 24-member task force appointed in 1989 by Superintendent Michael E. Hickey.

During a Board of Education meeting Thursday, Joan M. Palmer, associate superintendent of curriculum and supervision, introduced a 20-page booklet describing the values, which will be incorporated into school courses at different grade levels.

First- through fifth-graders, for example, will learn to appreciate diversity through math by working in small groups with students of different backgrounds, abilities and learning that there are many different ways to solve a problem.

"I was very impressed with the booklet," said board member Susan J. Cook. "It would be nice if we could send a list of them to the Republic[an] National Convention."

Some of the 18 values are: appreciation of diversity, community service, compassion, democracy, equality of opportunity, freedom of thought and expression, global responsibility, honesty, integrity, justice, perseverance, respect and care for the environment, respect for human dignity, respect for self, responsibility, responsible citizenship, and self-discipline.

In other action, the school board:

* Awarded a $2.4 million construction bid to the Waynesboro Construction Co. to do site work for a new western high school on Route 108 and Trotter Road.

* Formally adopted the school system goals for 1992-1993, which include improving academic performance of underachieving students, promoting parent involvement and others.

* Formally approved the revised 1992 edition of "Exploring a Changing World," which had angered black parents because of its depiction of Africa. The new edition was changed to portray Egypt and other countries as part of Africa.

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