Meet Our 2016-17"Fans of Dr. Bob"

1st MidAmerica Credit Union

Arvest Bank - South Noland Road

Blake Roberson State Farm Insurance

CenterPoint Medical Center

Commerce Bank

East Alton Community of Christ

Eastern Independence Rotary Club

First Federal Bank

Grace Christian Church

Graceland University

South Crysler Community of Christ

Stewardship Capital

Ted's Trash Service

Three Trails Animal Hospital

Trinity Church of the Nazarene



Students Recognized for RESPECT in JANUARY

Benton | Vyolet Warren

Blackburn | Kaycee Bachtel

Bryant | Issac Vickers

Fairmount | Emari Jeffrey


Korte | Isabella Cardenas

Little Blue | Maryssa Rayson

Luff | Ella Hursman


Mill Creek


Procter | Estella Campbell

Randall | Austin Cochran

Santa Fe Trail

Spring Branch | James Buehler

William Southern | Emily Holloway

Sugar Creek | Preston Gruhler


Three Trails | Gannon Dawson

Hanthorn | Riley Free

Sunshine Center

Independence Academy | Orianna Sullivan

Bridger | Trinity Roberts

Bingham | Madalyn Miller


Pioneer Ridge | Jullie Wheaton


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!


ISD Schools Celebrate RESPECT in JANUARY!

Benton Elementary is participating in Kindness Week!  The school challenge is to show kindness to others outside of our school. Each grade level will create 150 cards or Valentines that will be presented to our community partner, Centerpoint, at our monthly character assembly. Cards will be distributed to Centerpoint cardiac patients.  Staff Honoree: Jacquie Rajer

Blackburn Elementary kicked off our January Kindness Week with each classroom hanging paint pallets outside their classes. Each day, classes participating in "Coloring Blackburn with Kindness" color a swatch on their pallet showing their participation! This simple idea got everyone in the spirit of spreading kindness. Classes choosing to participate received special treats of kindness! Blackburn students signed a banner pledging their ability to spread kindness all week long!  Staff Honoree: Lisa Siron

Bryant Elementary Staff Honoree: Vicky Myres

Fairmount Elementary Staff Honoree: Chritina Fatool

Korte Elementary Student Leadership Team will be presenting tasks for Korte students to complete during the Great Kindness Challenge. Each day students will put their initials in the box after completing!  Staff Honoree: Julie Bover

Little Blue Elementary is back in full Shark mode after winter break. The focus, as always, is to be a S.H.A.R.K. by being Safe, Honest, Accountable, Respectful, and Kind. Little Blue has a yearly tradition during Kindness Week, to report kind acts they see on links of paper.  Once gathered, the school puts all links together to make a long chain of kindness that hangs in the building. Little Blue had a very successful PTA/Buffalo Wild Wings night this month. Little Blue families filled the restaurant, with part of their bill supporting Little Blue PTA.  Staff Honoree: Christine Tatum

Luff Elementary is celebrating with a Great Kindness Challenge Week!  Luff Student Leadership Council prepared a kindness tree and cut out many paper hands; if a student sees a kind act, they write it on a hand and add to the Kindness tree. We are hoping our tree grows like a weed! The Luff Leadership Council is selling Kindness Grams that include a fancy pencil.  Staff Honoree: Kristen Riddle

Mallinson Elementary students created the Great Kindness Chain to celebrate the Great Kindness Challenge. Students created paper links filled with acts of kindness students witnessed, or did themselves. Members from STUCO stapled links together to create a long paper chain. William Chrisman presented the ENUF Stop Bullying assembly and helped students learn the "cool" approach to stop bullying. Mallinson had their first STEM Makerspace night where students got to participate in a variety of activities related to science, technology, engineering and math. Students got to create calm-down bottles, build with Legos, engineer paper airplanes and much more.  Staff Honoree: Vianca Pascual-Villeda

Ott Elementary collected over 700 items in December to donate to the Independence Great Plains SPCA Animal Shelter. Continuing our year of service, in January we collected donations for the Salvation Army Crossroads Shelter. Our Character and Service cadre is meeting to plan our incentives for our kick-off, as well as planning our Week of Kindness activities.  On January 20th, we will participate in a site visit sharing our CHARACTERplus and Leader in Me initiatives to a visiting school. Our kindness activities include grade levels writing letters of thanks to various groups. Kindergarten wrote kindness letters to special teachers, first grade wrote to office workers, 2nd grade wrote to bus drivers, 3rd grade wrote to custodians, 4th grade wrote to cafeteria workers and 5th grade wrote to PTA.  Staff Honoree: Liz Dominguez

Procter Elementary 5th grade students wrote and produced an anti-bullying video as part of their "Speak Life" Counselor Unit Lesson. We kicked off our Great Kindness Challenge with an assembly and a schoolwide heart and banner displaying, "We Love You ACE," in honor of Royals pitcher Yordano Ventura. As part of the challenge, we collected school supplies for Honduras.  Students are challenged to display targeted kind acts each day of the week including telling others 'thank you" in a foreign language, giving compliments on heart-shaped cards, cleaning and recycling. One of our 4th grade classes made thank you cards for our community helpers. Procter’s Student Council looked for students who displayed kindness each day and presented them with a gift. We included spirit wear as part of kindness week.  Staff Honoree: Susan Jackson

Randall Elementary students participated in the January Great Kindness Challenge. Activities included dressing up for Spirit Week, individual and group acts of kindness, and writing kind acts on a paper kindness chain. Student Council helped clean up our community by picking up trash on Jennings Road in January. Randall is hosting a Dunkin' with Dad Basketball Night on January 31st. Students will play basketball with their dads, grandfathers, uncles, or positive male role models.  Staff Honoree: Elizabeth Donnell

Santa Fe Trail Elementary students enjoyed classroom lessons on Respect in January. Some classes worked on self-respect and others created a "new friend" from mixed up drawings to demonstrate that just because someone looks a little different, they are still worthy of our respect and kindness. Santa Fe Trail will participate in Great Kindness Week! We will have spirit days, hear a kind quote every morning, participate in classroom activities and get as many kind acts as possible checked off our checklists. The Trailblazers can't wait to show how kind we are!  Staff Honoree: Liz Mueller

Spring Branch Elementary Staff Honoree: Christine Ellis

William Southern Elementary is doing a daily kindness quote during morning announcements and a daily kindness challenge. Students are decorating grocery bags for Hy-Vee, bags will be used to sack groceries for the community. Students can donate $1 to record a kind message to a teacher. William Southern is raising money for Tabatha's closet with a goal of $150!  Staff Honoree: Angie Jochum

Sugar Creek Elementary is highlighting kindness throughout the week, while very thoughtfully creating Valentines to give to the residents of The Groves!  Staff Honoree: Krisi Ward

Sycamore Hills Elementary gave up holiday parties and instead took on a service project! This year Sycamore students made homemade chew toys for our community partner, Independence Great Plains SPCA. Students collected items for the SPCA by using a giving tree; items included food, paper towels, toys, and other pet needs our Counselor enjoyed delivering this month. Sycamore is doing a great job getting back into routine after winter break!  Our PBIS review went well and students are excited about continued recognition for good behavior and great academics! Caring Cougars made posters for the school to inform students of the Kindness Challenge Spirit Week. Each day a challenge was read over the intercom on how to do something kind that day. Sycamore started a pop tab program in January for the Ronald McDonald House.  Staff Honoree: Kelly Britt

Three Trails Elementary 5th grade students participated in a Project Lead the Way Fair. Each student or student group displayed their work to our Tigers. Students were able to demonstrate their projects, explain the work it took to create them, and answer questions from their peers. This was a great opportunity for our 5th graders to assume a leadership role and proudly take ownership of their hard work. There was evidence of a lot of great thinking and hard work on display for all of our students to explore!  Staff Honoree: Lauren Montgomery

Hanthorn Early Education Center Family Night was a huge success. Children wore their pajamas to the 'Winter Wonderland' and had cocoa and popcorn while parents learned more about PBIS. There were over 150 in attendance! Hanthorn hosted a 'Muffins for Mom' event where children and moms enjoyed mini muffins, decorated paper muffins and listened to the poem, 'Muffins for Mom.'  Staff Honoree: Cheryl Garringer

Independence Academy participated in a week-long Kindness Challenge in January. Students and staff participated in kindness activities each day that tied to the CHARACTERplus trait Respect. Starting Monday, students and staff contributed to a kindness chain, each link reflected a completed act of kindness, or ones they plan to do; Tuesday students looked for ways to help in their classrooms; Wednesday students complimented classmates; Thursday students wrote thank you notes to staff members; and Friday students ended the week by making a new friend.  Staff Honoree: Kimberly Reinke

Bridger Middle School participated in the Great Kindness Challenge in January. Character Council planned various activities to promote kindness throughout the week, including a kindness-themed Spirit Week.  Daily announcements included kindness quotes, and book marks for each student will promote ideas for showing kindness.  Staff Honoree: Allison Ross

Bingham Middle School is having three dress-up spirit days, pajama, farmer, and preppy day to collect personal hygiene, food and school supply items for Bingham's supply closet. Students get to participate by donating supplies to our FSL student supply closet.  Staff Honoree: Jocelyn Ewald

Pioneer Ridge Middle School is kicking off Kindness Week with Kindness BINGO. Students can earn BINGO by doing random acts of kindness for peers at school, and out in the community. We are hoping to show students how easy it is to be kind and how large the impact can be on others.  Staff Honoree: Doug Rawie


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.