Computer Learning

2021 National Schools of Character

(May 12, 2021) St. Louis, MO… CharacterPlus®, the longest-running character education initiative in the country, is proud to announce Missouri’s nine schools named 2021 National Schools of Character. These schools have demonstrated a focus on character development which has positively impacted academic achievement, student behavior, and school climate. Nationally, 47 schools and one school district received the honor this year, as well as one school in Brazil (where CharacterPlus is a resource partner) and one in Mexico.
All of the schools selected as National Schools of Character have demonstrated exemplary implementation of’s 11 Principles of Effective Character Education, a framework for whole-school improvement. This designation lasts for five years. 
One of the highlights of our year at CharacterPlus is recognizing the hard work and dedication of these schools. CharacterPlus member schools and districts historically represent more than 20% of the nation’s National School of Character designees.  
This year, three local schools previously recognized as National Schools of Character reapplied and received the designation for the third time, meaning they have been involved in the Schools of Character process since at least 2011. Those schools are:
Bayless Elementary (Bayless)*
Lincoln Elementary (Lincoln County R-III)*
Woerther Elementary (Rockwood)*
Five regional schools previously recognized as National Schools of Character reapplied and received the designation for the second time. Those schools are:

Barretts Elementary (Parkway)

Bayless High (Bayless)

Busch Middle School of Character (SLPS)

Craig Elementary (Parkway)

Don Earl Early Childhood (Fox)

Additionally, one school received the designation of National School of Character for the first time. That school is:

Belton Middle (Belton)

The Schools of Character program in Missouri is managed locally by CharacterPlus and is generously supported by Emerson. CharacterPlus, located in St. Louis, is a membership-based nonprofit organization committed to equipping school stakeholders with the resources they need to provide high quality character education. Through CharacterPlus, schools receive evidence-based development and training in effective character education for school transformation.


The 11 Principles of Character Education and State Schools of Character are trademarks of in Washington, DC. and CharacterPlus have been partners in character education since 1993.

For additional information about this recognition or each school’s journey to National School of Character designation, please contact Nicole Diehl, Missouri Schools of Character Coordinator, at