Taking a Stand for Character

Beginning this school year, Parkland High School is implementing a new system to promote trustworthiness, respect, responsibility, fairness, caring, and citizenship–also known as “The Six Pillars of Character.” Character can be described as a person’s defining trait, and it is important for Parkland students–now more than ever–to embrace positive characteristics and promote “The Six Pillars of Character.” 

Photo courtesy of Jess Benninger; A vibrant banner featuring “The Six Pillars of Character” can be seen outside the D-wing at Parkland High School.

CHARACTER COUNTS! (CC!) is an organization that currently operates out of Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa, and was founded by Michael Josephson and the Joseph and Edna Josephson Institute of Ethics in 1992. The CC! initiative works to improve various environments, including educational, professional, and social, by promoting “The Six Pillars of Character” and encouraging students to become more mindful of how they are interacting among their surroundings and with others.

While walking through the halls of Parkland High School, students’ peripherals are flooded with bright, rainbow-colored banners displaying six traits that are especially important for students to bring to life throughout the transition back from a challenge-ridden year. Parkland students and staff are working hard to bring these characteristics to life, but how exactly does this look in a school of nearly 3,500 students?


Trustworthiness: Between cheering on peers at sports games and showing up to support the arts, Parkland students can always be trusted to support one another.

Respect: Students and staff at Parkland share immense respect for each other’s valiant efforts to educate, learn, and grow in every aspect.

Responsibility: Parkland teachers show responsibility by offering a listening ear and dependably offering the very best materials to expand students’ knowledge; students return the favor by consistently putting in their best efforts in class and in extracurriculars.

Citizenship: Parkland students show incredible unity and Parkland pride by consistently repping Parkland sports teams, clubs, and theater groups.

Fairness: Good sportsmanship and theater etiquette are two of the most abundant examples of fairness at Parkland High School.

Caring: There is no better way to describe the Parkland community than “caring.” Students and staff are always there to lend a helping hand. Whether it’s assisting a new student in finding their way to class, or being there for a friend during a particularly difficult day, Parkland students and staff always find a way to be caring.


The month of September is represented by the red pillar: caring. Parkland students have the opportunity to be noticed for demonstrating this important trait. As a reward for their efforts, students may win the chance to have Parkland’s newest luxury–the red couch–delivered to a sporting event of their choosing. For more information regarding the new “Six Pillars of Character,” take a look at this video (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-tM1EkxnXG0) brought to you by Mr. Moniz.