Smart & Good High Schools Report

Download HERE :        Be warned :  this is a huge pdf file,  over 200 pages,       


 Throughout history, and in cultures all over the world, education rightly conceived has had two great goals: to help students become smart and to help them become good. They need character for both.

They need character qualities such as diligence, a strong work ethic, and a positive attitude in order to do their best in school and succeed in life. They need character qualities such as honesty, respect, and fairness in order to live and work with others.


A Report to the Nation

Smart & Good High Schools is a national study of high schools—including site visits to 24 diverse schools, hundreds of interviews, a comprehensive research review, and the input of a National Experts Panel and a National Student Leaders Panel. The report offers a vision of educational excellence and nearly 100 promising practices for building 8 strengths of character that help youth lead productive, ethical, and fulfilling lives.

SMART & GOOD SCHOOLS is a project of the Center for the 4th and 5th Rs. Drawing on theory, research, and onthe-ground wisdom, including site visits to 24 high schools that had received external recognition.  The report also describes practices that create a professional ethical learning community in which staff work together to maximize their positive impact on excellence and ethics and the eight strengths of character.

 Main Researchers & Investigators :   Prof Thomas Lickona, PhD and Dr Matt Davidson, PhD

This report views character, defined to include striving for excellence and striving for ethical behavior, as the cornerstone of success in school and life.  


A Smart & Good High School is committed to developing the performance character and moral character of adolescents within an ethical learning community.


By performance character, we mean those qualities needed to realize one’s potential for excellence—to develop one’s talents, work hard, and achieve goals in school, work, and beyond.


By moral character,we mean those qualities needed to be ethical—to develop just and caring relationships, contribute to community, and assume the responsibilities of democratic citizenship.


By an ethical learning community, we mean staff, students, parents, and the wider community working together to model and develop performance character and moral character.


Performance character and moral character are, in turn, defined in terms of eight strengths of character which, taken together, offer a vision of human flourishing over a lifetime.




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