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This week the Downey Unified School District, in collaboration with the city of Downey, received the Golden Bell Award from the California School Boards Association, an award presented every year to recognize “sustainable, innovative or exemplary programs which have been developed and successfully implemented by California teachers and administrators.”
Downey won the honor for its work in Character Counts, a program instituted locally in 2006 by DUSD superintendent Dr. Wendy Doty.
The city and Councilman Councilman Mario Guerra, IBA West member and President, Scanlon, Guerra, Burke Insurance Brokers, Woodland Hills were also recognized by Michael Josephson, founder of the Josephson Intitute and ethics guru as a sharp contrast to nearby neighbor, the city of Bell.
Guerra said that Downey was committed to finding other ways of embedding these ethical values throughout the city so that its commitment would be pervasive and permanent, part of the DNA of the community.
This week Guerra unveiled a new street sign, Responsibility Row, for the street leading to City Hall. Character Counts sets out to improve students’ character by focusing on the “Six Pillars of Character,” trustworthiness, respect, responsibility, fairness, caring and citizenship.
Congratulations to Mario and the city of Downey for their inspiring example.