School values can help you and your school identify things that your school aspires toward.
The values statement highlights your ambitions for the types of students you are raising and shows your school’s ethos is consistent with the expectations of the community you serve.
Below is a list of some positive core school values that you could reflect upon to see which are right for your school.
Remember, different schools will emphasize different things in their values statements. For example, some will highlight tradition while others highlight progress. Schools in a diverse community will probably also highlight multiculturalism.
At the bottom of this list are some religious school values as well – scroll to the end if you’re looking for values that reflect a Christian or religious ethos.
List of Core School Values
1. Accountability – We hold ourselves accountable for our own actions, admit when we failed our own standards, and always strive to be our best selves.
2. Appreciation – We show appreciation for one another whenever possible. We appreciate our parents and teacher for everything they do for us and appreciate the kindness of our friends.
3. Community-Minded – Our school is a central hub of our community. We welcome the community to our school to share their skills and knowledge. We also want to contribute our skills and efforts to improve our local community through knowledge exchange.
4. Compassion – We are a school that grows children who care for one another, are concerned about the suffering of others, and want to act to make a better world.
5. Cooperation – We work well together with all of our friends and classmates. We want everyone to learn and succeed, and this requires us to work together, compromise, and share, in order to succeed.
6. Courage – We are a school that boldly faces challenges and support each other through difficult moments in our learning and life.
See Also: The 6 Types of Courage
7. Critical Thinking – We embrace and encourage thinking critically about the world’s problems. We teach students how to learn and be analytical so they can go out into the world as lifelong learners to solve the problems of the 21st Century.
8. Do Unto Others – We acknowledge the universal rule of “do unto others as we would have done to ourselves”. We actively think about how we would like to be treated if we were in the other person’s situation.
9. Doing More with Less – We believe that by doing more with less, we can leave a smaller footprint in the environment, pass on a sustainable world to the next generation, and work more efficiently.
10. Doing your Best – We always strive to work on ourselves and achieve our personal best in the classroom.
See Also: 27 Examples of Morals
11. Embracing Change – We believe change can be a positive opportunity for creating a better self, school, and society.
12. Encouraging one Another – We believe that encouraging one another can help build up each other’s confidence. Through encouragement, we can work through challenges and succeed as a team.
13. Energetic – Every day, we turn up to class excited and ready to participate. We put all of our energy into our activities so we can get the greatest reward out of them.
14. Excellence – We are a school that strives to excellence in academic, sporting, and artistic pursuits.
15. Friendship – As a school community, we see each other as friends in our learning journeys. Friends treat each other with respect and kindness every day.
See Also: 35 Personal Values Examples
16. Giving One Another a Chance – Everyone has a right to participate and have a go. We think about others and make sure other people in our team have had a chance to contribute, share their ideas, and have their ideas considered in class.
17. Goal-Oriented – We’re a goal-oriented school. We set ourselves personal goals that are challenging but achievable. We work every day to meet our goals.
18. Gratitude – We practice gratitude for our parents, our teachers, our free country, and our beautiful school.
19. Growth – We have growth mindsets. We always believe we can improve and work every day to learn something new.
20. Here to Learn – School is a place for learning. We turn up every day prepared to listen, think, practice, and act on our new knowledge.
21. High Expectations – We have high expectations of ourselves and believe that we are capable of achieving more than we set out to.
22. Honesty – We value honesty when communicating with one another. The greatest test of honesty is when we must admit when we were wrong.
23. Humility – We are humble in both success and failure. We acknowledge that we are standing on the shoulders of giants and that our personal successes are achieved through the hard work and love of our parents, teachers, and community.
24. Inclusion – All students are welcome in our classrooms and their uniqueness is celebrated. Students with additional needs
25. Individualism – We are a school that encourages people to embrace their true selves and share their uniqueness with the world.
26. Integrity – We are both honest and driven by a clear moral compass. Students with integrity strive to do the right thing at all times.
27. Justice – We believe in creating a world that is fair and just. We hold ourselves accountable for promoting fairness and identifying injustice where it occurs.
28. Kindness – We value being kind to one another, using our manners, and being considerate of each other’s feelings.
See Also: Values Statement Examples
29. Leadership – We strive to become the leaders of tomorrow by practicing leadership in our school community today.
30. Multiculturalism – We are a school that embraces the cultural diversity of our community. We accept all cultures into the classroom and seek to learn about the unique perspectives of people from cultures different to our own.
31. One Percent Better – We believe we can improve by one percent every single day. We set goals to achieve small improvements in each lesson.
32. Open-Mindedness – We are open to new experiences and new challenges. We’re willing to change our minds when faced with new evidence.
33. Participation – We participate in all academic and sporting activities regardless of skill level. We create an atmosphere where participation is encouraged and we support one another to do our best regardless of skill level.
34. Perseverance – We recognize that learning is hard but we can reach our learning goals with the guidance of our teachers and the support of our friends.
35. Preparedness – We come to school prepared to learn. We ensure we have the right resources and mindsets for engaging with our work each and every day.
36. Punctuality – We respect one another’s time and learn to be on time for learning. By being punctual, we are showing that we value learning.
37. Reflectiveness – We value reflection as a way to achieve improvement. We think about our actions and see how we can improve next time.
38. Respect – We respect one another’s right to safety and dignity at school. We will speak to each other with calmness, politeness, and civility.
39. Scientific – We’re a school that values and appreciates the power of science and the scientific method to improve the lives of ourselves, our country, and everyone around the world.
40. Shared Expectations – We have a commitment to one another to treat each other with respect. Because we have high expectations of others, we should expect them of ourselves as well.
41. Sharing – We share resources with one another so we can all succeed. We known when it’s our turn to have a go, but also when it’s other people’s turn to use resources or speak up in the classroom.
42. Sustainability – We work toward an environmentally friendly and sustainable lifestyle. We consistently seek new ways to be more sustainable and to protect our local, national, and global environment.
43. Taking Action – We believe that we should put what we learn into practice. By taking action, learning is more memorable and relevant to our lives.
44. Teamwork – All of us are one team. We work together because we know that we can achieve more as a team than as individuals.
45. Thankfulness – We remember to be thankful for our teachers, peers, and community. We remember to express our thanks to one another in our daily interactions.
46. Thoughtfulness – We think before we act. We’re always trying to think about what we’re missing or overlooking in a situation, thinking about things from other people’s perspectives, and reflecting on our own actions.
47. Traditionalism – Our school embraces traditional values, respect for our elders, and respect for our long-standing culture.
48. Truth – We both speak the truth to others and seek the truth in everything we do. As truth seekers, we use logic, science, and critical reasoning to come to our conclusions.
49. Willingness to Fail – Success doesn’t occur without failure. Our teachers create an atmosphere where failure is acceptable so long as we do our best. We have the courage to have a go and accept failure as an opportunity to learn rather than a negative reflection on ourselves.
50. Worldly – We have a global outlook. We think about and care for all of humanity and want to be partners in creating a better world in our local, national, and global communities.
51. Maturity – We believe that demonstrating our own maturity can help us gain respect from our teachers, parents, and community. Mature students today will be community leaders tomorrow.
52. Commitment – We are committed to our studies and to the promises we make to our teachers, parents, and friends. We commit to doing our best and always striving to improve.
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List of Religious School Values
53. Compassion – We acknowledge the compassion and forgiveness of God and share our own compassion by following his lead. We are compassionate to the needy, the poor, and the downtrodden.
54. Evangelism – As true believers in the word of God, it is our mission to share the good news with our children and our community. We go out into the world with goodwill to all and with the hope they can open their hearts to God’s message.
55. Godliness – We think about God in all that we do. We believe God can lead us on the right path in life and wish to lead our lives following God’s example.
56. Grace – We value the grace of God and seek to live a life in accordance with his mission. We want to share his grace with future generations and members of our community.
57. Service – Informed by our faith, we believe in the importance of service to our God and our fellow man.
58. Spirituality – We believe in cultivating both the cognitive and spiritual minds. Our mission is to raise a holistic child who will be ready to tackle the world after graduating.
59. Verity – Our school values are underpinned by a belief in the truth of the gospel which can guide us toward a good life in service to others.
- Waldorf School of Pittsburgh
- Christ Church Grammar School
- Tadcaster Grammar School
- Timothy Christian School
Every school will need to come up with its own core school values, which will strongly depend upon the school’s community and its founding principles. A multicultural school will emphasize diversity, a religious school will emphasize its religious values, such as commitment to God, and a public school may emphasize inclusivity.
It’s also a good idea to consult parents and community members about what they think the school’s values should be. By consulting stakeholders, you’re showing respect to them and highlighting the fact you want the school to reflect community values.
Dr. Chris Drew is the founder of the Helpful Professor. He holds a PhD in education and has published over 20 articles in scholarly journals. He is the former editor of the Journal of Learning Development in Higher Education. [Image Descriptor: Photo of Chris]