Cowern earns statewide ‘character development’ award

Cowern Elementary School Principal Sonya Czerepak, District 622 Board Member Nancy Livingston, School Board Chair Amy Coborn, Sen. Chuck Wiger and teachers Cindy Piersdorf and Mary Glagavs at the award ceremony. (submitted photo)

In celebration of Character Recognition Day on May 8, Synergy & Leadership Exchange presented awards for positive character development to 17 schools and four community programs at the Character Recognition Awards Ceremony at the Minnesota State Capitol. Cowern Elementary School received a Promising Practices Award for “Promoting Peace Across the Grade Levels,” a practice where each student participates in a cross-grade level peace group, meeting on a monthly basis to focus on a specific topic and engage in activities that promote peace building and positive relationships.

Minnesota Secretary of State Mark Ritchie was emcee for the event and Dr. Kent Pekel, president and CEO of the Search Institute, delivered the keynote.

The seventh annual Minnesota Schools of Character awards recognize schools and/or districts that excel in exemplifying the 11 Principles of Effective Character Education and demonstrate outstanding character education initiatives yielding positive results in student behavior, school climate and academic performance.

The Minnesota Promising Practices awards recognize schools that have developed and implemented a practice promoting character development in their schools. These practices must be specific, unique and encompass at least one of the 11 principles, and award winners can be viewed on the Synergy website in order to be adapted to other schools.

Synergy & Leadership Exchange (Synergy) is a non-profit organization dedicated to fostering collaboration to advance the development of ethical citizens, providing educational resources, and celebrating achievement and best practices in Minnesota schools, businesses and communities.

For more information on the Minnesota Schools of Character and Promising Practices Awards visit and click on the Celebrate tab.


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