Tuesday 04 July 2023

Accredited School of Character

The School has recently embarked on an accreditation process with an international organisation, Character.org to become a registered and accredited school of character. At Ivanhoe Grammar School, the journey of character dates back over 100 years. Our Founding Principal, Reverend Sydney Buckley, famously made the following comment, not long after the School was established: ‘In a recent issue of a daily newspaper, character training was described as a sideline in education. It is not a sideline. It is the very core of education.’

Spearheaded by Deputy Principal/ Head of Plenty Campus Fiona Devlin, the accreditation process required the School to demonstrate, through practice and evidence, that it could meet 11 principles and we are delighted to report that we have met all criteria at this stage to have our first stage accreditation process.

“In the past year, we have been on a journey to become an accredited School of Character, the first of its kind in Australia. The journey has allowed us to look at the past, present and future of developing young people of character which is at the heart of our Ivanhoe philosophy,” said Deputy Principal/ Head of Plenty Campus Fiona Devlin.

This accreditation demonstrates Ivanhoe’s commitment to developing young people of character and an annual auditing process makes sure that the School is continuing to implement and embed Character.org’s 11 principles.

Character.org is based on the 11 Principles Framework: cultivating a culture of character, developed by school leaders and character education researchers, that all accredited schools must meet and practise.

  • Principle 1 A set of core values are identified and embedded into the culture of the family, school, sports team, or organisation.
  • Principle 2 Character involves understanding, caring about and practising your culture’s core values.
  • Principle 3 Your character development approach is proactive and comprehensive.
  • Principle 4 Caring attachments and relationships foster a sense of belonging and connection.
  • Principle 5 There are ample opportunities for everyone to live their core values, especially opportunities to serve others.
  • Principle 6 Your culture of character strives to develop everyone’s “best self,” including the four areas of character (moral, civic, performance and intellectual).
  • Principle 7 A culture of character emphasises intrinsic motivation rather than recognition or material rewards.
  • Principle 8 Everyone shares the responsibility to model, practice and uphold the core values.
  • Principle 9 All stakeholders are encouraged to take a leadership role and suggest ways to embed and practice the core values.
  • Principle 10 Your character initiative engages a range of partners (family members, parents, community members, etc.).
  • Principle 11 Core values are reaffirmed or revised each year to ensure that your character initiative is always improving and growing.

We are grateful to the Ivanhoe community who took part in the accreditation process which included testimonials from parents, staff, students, alumni and the community.

Looking ahead, we eagerly anticipate continuing this journey and establishing Ivanhoe Grammar School as the first accredited School of Character in Australia.