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Contra Costa County Office of EducationJune 7, 2012
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As the school year comes to an end, I want to wish everyone a restful and joyful summer, and share with you a new initiative that I launched in January of 2012 to support and endorse the work that we all do on a daily basis, which is to serve as role models for our students so that they can learn how to act in a civil manner.  We also acknowledge our students when they exhibit civility in their daily lives.

By virtue of city and county governments endorsing a resolution entitled, Choosing Civility, I have asked their elected leaders to share in acting in a civil manner and acknowledging our students for their civility.  I think we can all agree that civility is a core value of a well-functioning community and that quality of life depends on how people treat each other.

I am pleased to announce that school boards have also endorsed Choosing Civility for the coming year.  Additionally, the 2012 Teachers of the Year have selected from the work of P. M. Forni, the author of Choosing Civility, the following 10 out of 25 of his civility principles that we, as an educational community, should focus on in the coming school year:
  • September:  Pay Attention
  • October:  Acknowledge Others
  • November:  Listen
  • December:  Speak Kindly
  • January:  Accept and Give Praise
  • February:  Respect Others' Opinions  
  • March:  Be Inclusive
  • April:  Respect Other People's Time
  • May:  Don't Shift Responsibility and Blame
  • June:  Apologize Earnestly 
As you prepare for the coming year, please be cognizant of encouraging your students to practice the civility principle listed for each of the months of the school year and please let me know, as well as your school board and local elected officials, the success of your students so that they can be acknowledged within the community.

Please feel free to refer to the Contra Costa County Office of Education website for further information regarding Choosing Civility.

Published by the Contra Costa County Office of Education Communications Office
77 Santa Barbara Road, Pleasant Hill, California 94523
Joseph A. Ovick, Ed.D., Superintendent of Schools
Editor: Peggy Marshburn; Writer/Layout: Jonathan Lance, (925) 942-3429;
Diane Morrell, Designer; June Stephens, Web Developer 
Dateline is distributed during the school year to all public schools in the county by the Communications Office. Information must be received by the first of the preceding month. Publication does not signify the Contra Costa County Office of Education endorses the event or program mentioned.


Jonathan Lance