"What are the rules to succeed at Codman Academy?" Our Citizenship system is the rule book, making transparent to students what the expected norms for behavior are within our community, which functions as both a professional and academic space. In 2004, the school launched the Citizenship system, a computer based tool that tracks student behavior. The system, designed by George Brackett, Ph.D. and our faculty, seeks to recognize and reward positive decision making while holding students accountable when school expectations are not met.
Each student starts the trimester with 500 Citizenship Points. Using personal computers, staff are able to award positive points (labeled kudos) and negative points (labeled deltas) to students in real time. Kudos, which are awarded in 30-50 point increments, include clean up help, engagement/participation, leadership, perseverance/effort, positive attitude, scholarship, service, and tutoring. For the Citizenship system to work, the positive choices and actions students take must be recognized and celebrated; students above 800 points are able to award points to fellow students and students at 1000 points are added to the Citizenship Honor Roll. Students on the Citizenship Honor Roll receive a special prize each trimester (e.g. movie passes, restaurant gift certificates, bookstore coupons, etc) and are eligible for special field trips over the course of the year (major league sports events, dinners, theater tickets, etc). Students below 200 points are assigned detention. Students are responsible for attending detention until their points are above 200. Interventions and/or suspension hearings are scheduled for students who are below 200 points for multiple weeks with the goal of helping the student be successful.
Citizenship is not a "gotcha" strategy. An important feature of the system, though, is that there are no automatic points for positive behavior, and no points are awarded if a student requests them. The spirit of the system is to follow the norms of our community, and to move from external feedback (points, consequences) to internal feedback and self-control as students mature over the course of their education.
Additional information on the school's Citizenship program including evaluations of its effectiveness:
-Codman Academy's Application for Renewal (2010)
To learn more about how to implement the Citizenship system at your school contact Meg Campbell, Executive Director .