Meet Our 2017-18 "Fans of Dr. Bob"

1st MidAmerica Credit Union

Blake Roberson State Farm Insurance

East Alton Community of Christ

Eastern Independence Rotary Club

First Federal Bank

Grace Christian Church

Graceland University

Great Plains SPCA

Metropolitan Com College - Blue River

South Crysler Community of Christ

Stewardship Capital

Ted's Trash Service

Three Trails Animal Hospital

Trinity Church of the Nazarene



Students Recognized for CITIZENSHIP in NOVEMBER!




Fairmount | Gerald Krantz

Glendale | Jaxson Ortiz


Little Blue | Abigail Alvarez

Luff | Gracie Durham


Mill Creek

Ott | Ella Campbell


Randall | Jarell Jackson

Santa Fe Trail | Lilyana Torres

Spring Branch

William Southern 

Sugar Creek


Three Trails | Jonah Cash


Sunshine Center

Independence Academy | Elementary: Ian Gable; Middle School: Cody Ward, High School: Taylor Nance 



Nowlin | Tariyah Williams

Pioneer Ridge | Brandon Woytowich

Truman | Jessica Curtis

William Chrisman

Van Horn


Traits of the Month

January:  RESPECT – to show consideration to self and others

February:  COOPERATION – to respectfully play and work with others

March:  INITIATIVE – to act and make decisions on your own

April:  PERSEVERANCE – to continue trying in spite of difficulties

May:  SELF-CONTROL – to express your feelings in an appropriate manner

June:  COURAGE – to remain strong when faced with difficulty

July:  LOYALTY – to be faithful to a person, a team or an idea

August:  AMBITION – to have strong determination to accomplish goals

September:  RESPONSIBILITY – to be accountable for your actions

October:  INTEGRITY – to do the right thing

November:  CITIZENSHIP – to be a productive and responsible resident

December:  COMPASSION – to understand the challenges of others and to want to do something about it


Student Honors and School News Appears Monthly!



Fairmount Elementary holds a monthly assembly focusing on GRIT, Doing the Right Thing and Treating People Right. Students and staff participated in a wonderful Veteran’s Day Assembly, the Van Horn High School Color Guard joined the celebration!

Glendale Elementary Student Council continues to collect donations for Great Plains SPCA in Independence. Kindness and anti-bullying lessons were discussed during community circle time; Glendale students strategized how to promote kindness and handle bullying behaviors. Students from each classroom were nominated and photographed for the citizenship bulletin board. During community circle, classes discussed what citizenship means and shared examples of showing citizenship inside and outside school. Students set goals for demonstrating good citizenship at school and home. Venn diagrams were made to compare and contrast characteristics that may or may not show good citizenship. During a morning activity, classes discussed the difference and importance of a bucket filler and a bucket dipper. Class charts were created showing what it looks like, sounds like, and feels like to be a classroom of bucket fillers. Children were encouraged and praised for demonstrating bucket filler qualities throughout the day.  Staff Honoree: Tim Blom

Little Blue Elementary saluted their Veteran’s with a beautiful assembly. A quarterly assembly acknowledged students with perfect attendance and those students who were nominated for being a SHARK. In late November, Little Blue celebrated grandparents with a breakfast and visit to the classroom. During this event, students started a Giving Tree for shoes, socks, coats, and hygiene items for families at Little Blue.  Staff Honoree: Kelly Conner

Luff Elementary treated our hardworking volunteers with a Volunteer Breakfast. The choir sang and staff provided egg/breakfast casseroles galore along with other yummy food. We honored our Veterans with a spectacular program! Fifth graders organized and led the program, even calling Hy-Vee and ordering cookies! All students honoring a family veteran were incorporated in a beautiful slideshow. Ms. Asberry's class had PERFECT attendance for two straight months and were treated with an ice cream truck visit!  All 83 Luff students with perfect attendance first quarter were surprised with laser tag!  Staff Honoree: Laura Reaves

Mallinson Elementary hosted a "Cardinals Care Drive" as a Community Service Project collecting toiletries for the homeless. Students worked together in groups to bag the donated items. Dr. Brown read the book "Only One You" to every class, then students got to decorate a rock for our rock garden. Each student created their own special mark on Mallinson! We hosted our first "Always Doing the Right Thing" celebration for students who always do the right thing at school. We had 101 Cardinals come to the gym for an awesome dance party!

Ott Elementary Staff Honoree: Jamie Fisher

Randall Elementary students honored veterans and active service members with a Veteran's Day Assembly November 10th. Students wrote letters and drew pictures to say thank you. Two Randall staff members spoke about their experience in the military and how elementary school prepared them. Student Council held their annual food drive to benefit St. Marks Community Food Pantry. Randall hosted a Grandparents / Special Friends Day on November16th. Students were able to eat a Thanksgiving lunch and shop at the book fair with their visitors.  Staff Honoree: Jessica Teevan

Santa Fe Trail Elementary held their annual Veteran's Day assembly November 10. Students led the program with poems, songs and personal tributes to their family and friends. On November 14, Santa Fe K-5 students celebrated Grandparents Day! Grandparents were able to visit their grandchild's classroom and enjoy a snack and craft together. Santa Fe Early Ed students celebrated with their grandparents the following day! November wraps up with our annual Change Challenge where students can bring change to raise money for Holiday Helpers. Not to be out done, Santa Fe Student Council started a pet supply drive! For the next few weeks students can bring pet supplies to donate to Great Plains SPCA.  Staff Honoree: Meredith Hangel

Sugar Creek Elementary celebrated Veteran's Day by inviting veteran's to join our monthly Breakfast with Books. We ended breakfast by saying the Pledge of Allegiance around the flag pole. One of our veteran dads spoke to kindergarten and showed students some of his gear. We now have Sugar Creek Super Eagles who meet every morning and act as ambassadors when we have building guests. The Super Eagles held a hat and glove drive for classmates in need of warm winter clothing.

Sycamore Elementary held their annual Veteran’s Day Assembly with special guests and student performances. Each year Sycamore invites special veteran speaker, Mr. Joe Harris; Mr. Harris is the parent of one of our staff members. Sycamore hosted “Stomp out Bullying” this month and focused counseling lessons on empathy and bullying. Sycamore’s VIP Day was a great success!  Students asked the “most valuable people” in their lives to join them for cookies and activities in the classroom.

Three Trails Elementary launched Student Ambassador Assistance in November; we love the leadership they display in our school! Student Ambassadors are responsible for checking on guest teachers in our building. Ambassadors inquire if subs need anything, inform where staff restrooms are and who can help with questions. The students love the responsibility, and we've received positive feedback from subs who appreciate a friendly face and offer to help.  Staff Honoree: Sarah Hart

Sunshine Center Early Education has been busy collecting food items to pass out to students and families at our Thanksgiving feast.  Staff Honoree: Christa Hutsell

Independence Academy is integrating PBIS with traditional character traits this year. The school-wide acronym for IA is SOAR: Safe, On Time | On Task, Accountable and Respectful. Our school mascot is a dragon, and we teach our students to "soar" like a dragon when faced with difficulty and adversity!  Our hope is that by teaching students character and strategies, they not only succeed in the short term, but it will carry them to "soar" to success in the future!

Pioneer Middle School Character Council has been busy finding ways to celebrate our students and community members. Veterans were honored with an assembly and breakfast in November; December we will bring caroling to a local retirement community. Pioneer students are holding a clothing drive for Tabitha's closet and FSL's, some supplies will be shared with PRMS students.  Staff Honoree: Elaine Jardon

Truman High School JROTC honored veterans on Veterans Day at an all-school assembly.  Staff Honoree: Ron Meyer


What is CHARACTERplus?

CHARACTERplus is a program adopted by the Independence School District in 2008. The purpose of CHARACTERplus is to emphasize positive character traits in all areas of a student's life.

In 2008, parents, community members, teachers and counselors gathered together to determine "traits of the month" that they believe reinforce the positive character traits already being taught in many homes.

The traits are blended into the curriculum, extracurricular activities, and are displayed throughout the community. The Independence School District believes that modeling character traits may be the most effective way of passing them on to students. Studies in schools with similar programs have noted significant positive changes in office referrals, parent relations and school leadership.


The Many Ways Character is Developed

Character is developed every day through our interactions and choices.  Schools within the Independence School District use a wide variety of activities, recognitions, and partnerships as part of comprehensive efforts to support POSITIVE CHARACTER, STUDENT LEADERSHIP, and SERVICE LEARNING. Two of our schools chose to pursue formal recognition for their character development efforts.  

Congratulations to Christian Ott Elementary and William Chrisman High School!  

Both hold National School of Character and Missouri School of Character designation!


How Can I Support CHARACTERplus?

It is easy to sign up as a supporter of CHARACTERplus. You will receive monthly trait signs that you can print out and put in your home or business, get updates on CHARACTERplus in the schools and in the community, and get a copy of the Student of Character logo to print out on your stationery or business correspondence, or set as your screen saver. In addition, parents should feel free to contact their school to see how they can help support CHARACTERplus. If you are a business or organization wanting to display a banner or sponsor a school as a Fan of Dr. Bob, contact the Elementary Education Office (816-521-5300  x10008).


Business, Faith, and Civic Organizations

YOU can Become a Fan of Dr. Bob

Are you a community member, business leader, or an organization that wants to help create a Community of Character? It's easy! You can donate your time, services or dollars to support CHARACTERplus in our schools. CHARACTERplus teaches students of all ages how to be good community members by promoting character in all facets of life!


Community Member of Character Award

Do you know someone in the community who deserves to win the Dr. Bob Community Member of Character Award?

The nominee must live or work in Independence but cannot work for the school district.

You can nominate a community member by contacting the Elementary Education office (816) 521-5300  x10008.