The Carlisle Way

In partnership with students, parents and the community, the Carlisle Area School District is committed to providing all students with educational and leadership opportunities to develop their full social and intellectual potential so that they will accept and meet the challenges of personal responsibility, enabling them to become contributing members of a diverse society. The district shall make every attempt to support a school climate that is based on high expectations and respect for the individuality of each student and staff member.

The Carlisle Area School District holds these beliefs:

1. Learning experiences must be designed to ensure that all students have the opportunity to achieve at the highest levels of academic excellence.

Programs shall be rigorous and reflect a commitment to standards of excellence which are clearly articulated and embedded in planned courses of study.

Programs shall be varied and provide options for students which reflect the interests, learning styles and needs of all groups within the student body at large.

The application and evaluation of innovative strategies and programs are essential in maintaining excellence in education in the future.

2. Each student is entitled to an educational experience that reflects the diversity of the community and is free from bias and discrimination and that the district will commit the resources necessary to achieve these goals:

The development and promotion of inter-group understanding, awareness and appreciation of the diversity represented in the school and community.

The enhancement of the self-worth of each student.

The development of good citizenship.

The development of good human-relations skills needed for interpersonal relations and conflict resolution arising from bias and discrimination of any kind.

3. The accomplishment of our educational goals is a continuous process designed to prepare individuals to expand their environment through:

Developing social awareness.

Developing a willingness to learn from one's own culture through interaction with others.

Fostering an appreciation for the value of diversity and dignity of every individual through inclusion.

• Providing educational excellence that ensures equity for all individuals.
• Recognizing that all students can learn and must be provided with the opportunities to realize their unique learning potential.
• Recognizing that all students must be responsible learners in order to take full advantage of the educational opportunities available to them.
• Promoting diversity as a strength of our community and society.
• Making reasonable efforts to use and to support the use of appropriate vocabulary in reference to others.

4. It is important to work cooperatively with community-based agencies and to provide opportunities to educate the community to the need to accept all of its members.

The district shall provide opportunities for students to gain educational benefits from the unique resources available in the community at large.

Parents, employers, and community groups and institutions will be necessary parts of the planning, implementation and evaluation of school programs.

5. It is important to hire highly qualified staff and to provide on-going staff development opportunities for all employees.

The district shall recruit, hire and retain the most qualified staff possible. Every effort should be made to recruit and hire qualified minority teachers and staff.

To foster the maximum development of each student, the staff must be knowledgeable, motivated and dedicated.

Diversity training for all staff shall be included in the staff development program offerings on an on-going basis.

6. Providing diverse academic and vocational curricula, as well as extracurricular programs, will prepare students for further educational pursuits, leadership roles and career choices.

Provide guidance and support services that will assist all students with personal, educational and career goals.

Challenge all students with continued advancements in technology, preparing them for further levels of education and career opportunities.

Encourage all students to take the most challenging and meaningful courses available to them including advanced placement courses.


In our service and care of our school community, we commit ourselves to these values:

Academic Achievement - we accept the responsibility to provide instruction and learning experiences of the highest quality for all students across all disciplines.
Safety - we are committed to maintaining a safe environment for all school community.
Dignity - we value the dignity of each person in our school community.
Professionalism - we are committed to a high standard of conduct in dealing with our students and colleagues and to continual improvement in the quality of education.
Stewardship - we responsibly use our available resources.
Service - we will strive to meet the needs of others.
Respect - we respect the individual needs, talents and differences of those in our school community.
Courtesy - we will treat each person politely and with consideration.
Concern - we care about the well-being of all people in our school community.
Responsibility - we promote the development of the physical, emotional, social and intellectual growth of each person in our school community.
Integrity - we consistently strive to demonstrate high ethical standards and the values of our organization.


The Carlisle Area School District is committed to lifelong learning through the education of current and future educators by providing continuous opportunities for professional growth.

Each staff member will:

1. assist in the provision of a meaningful learning experience for new and future educators to include a willingness to share with young colleagues.

2. display empathy in dealing with students and families in the fulfillment of the educational mission.

3. recognize, embrace and develop goals that support the diverse composition of our school district.

4. respect the needs of others in the educational community.

5. create and maintain a positive school environment for everyone.

6. recognize and develop the leadership potential that all individuals possess.

7. exhibit strong interpersonal communication skills to establish and maintain a good working relationship with students, families, community members and colleagues.

8. honor and uphold the vision, mission, beliefs, values and standards of excellence of the Carlisle Area School District.


Role Models
Students look to staff as examples of proper adult behavior. They do so far more than we sometimes realize. With this in mind we expect you to be examples in the areas of control, consideration, work ethic, language, and dress. If you expect students to be on time, then you cannot be late, unprepared, disorganized, and not ready to start class when they enter the room. In effect, you are the role model of The Carlisle Way.

Teacher-Student Relationships
The teacher-student relationship is always a professional one between adults and adolescents. There are two quotable quotes that describe The Carlisle Way in this area. The first quote is, "They don't care what you know until they know that you care." We must always present ourselves as adults who really like kids. Our desire for presenting ourselves as a caring staff should not be interpreted as advocating that we're "running a loose ship." On the contrary, classroom discipline and reasonable structure are often the best contribution you can make to the education of your students. The other quote is, "They remember how you treated them long after they forgot what you taught them." We have to be for students, not against them. You must be student-oriented in Carlisle Area School District. Our schools were built for the benefit of our students. We must be caring, firm, fair, consistent, and persevering. We acknowledge that virtually any trained educator can reach the intelligent, motivated, and well-behaved student. The master teachers however, find ways to teach the others.

Carlisle Area School District staff must be sensitive to the way they are dressed each day. As professionals, we need to dress in a manner that is generally recognized as professional. Neatness and good grooming are expected. It is recognized that certain staff members must dress according to their jobs.

Interpersonal Skills Development
We will continue to teach content across the curriculum. We will also be committed to the activities outlined in the strategic plan as well as the district initiatives designed to support this plan. All staff members shall be sensitive to the development of the principles of character education in our students. This includes the teaching of manners, consideration of others, respect for property, and the use of appropriate language. The acquisition and use of appropriate interpersonal skills by all of us are essential if we are to bring the components of the core philosophy alive and to create and maintain a school climate that will support our vision.

Discipline is the responsibility of all staff in Carlisle Area School District. We expect everyone from the custodians to the teachers, counselors, and office personnel to be conscious of student behavior. All staff members are to confront and to report inappropriate conduct. Staff members must not ignore behavior that is contrary to the principles inherent in The Carlisle Way.

Administrative Support
We will not tolerate inappropriate, unacceptable behavior from our students. In dealing with student misconduct disciplinary procedures will be followed at all times by all staff. We are here to provide you with administrative support with respect to student discipline. When you think before you act or speak and avoid creating situations where your actions are questionable, you will have our absolute support. We will assist you with the problem, help to calm the conflict, and/or to "save face" as much as possible. However, we can not and will not say that you were right if you were wrong. Please remember to think carefully before you speak and act.

Parent Contact
Professional staff members will be in contact with parents regarding the progress of their students. You are encouraged to contact parents with positive as well as negative information. Parent support is paramount in the success of students in school and we must do everything possible to solicit this support.

Teacher Participation
As often as possible, teachers are encouraged to support and to participate in student activities outside of the classroom. There is value in seeing our students participate in activities that are important to them. Additionally, when students see you attend these activities it sends the message that you care about and support things that interest them. We have been fortunate to have staff members who take great pride in providing students with a wide range of valuable, extra-curricular opportunities.

Teaching at All Levels
You will be expected to teach all levels of students. Some teachers prefer to teach only our "college-bound" students, but it is essential that students experience a variety of teachers. It is also expected that teachers differentiate instruction and assessment to accommodate various levels of student abilities and needs.

Grades and Grading Policy
We expect all teachers to adhere to the district grading policy guidelines. Grades should be available at all times for inquiries from students, parents, or administrators regarding students' progress. Grades are one of the indicators of student success and as such are subject to review and inquiry.

Homework and Assignments
We shall differentiate between homework given for practice purposes and homework given that is project based. Teachers must be sensitive to the amount of homework given to students for practice and the amount of time that would be expected to complete each assignment. The purpose of homework should be considered when homework is to be included (counted) in the course grading policy.

The Carlisle Way

We want Carlisle to be a school district that is associated with the terms class, integrity, and achievement, to be recognized as a school that embraces the diversity of our community and pushes our students to the brink of their potential, to be competitive, but known for our sportsmanship. We want the Carlisle Area School District known as a district where the staff and students look good and act even better. This appearance, attitude, and behavior must start with us. Some students come from an environment that cultivates these traits while others may need support from staff to acquire them. If The Carlisle Way represents a philosophy that you can support, then we welcome your application for employment in our district.

Reference: Girvin, Nancy J., The Emerald Way, August 1999.
Ms. Girvin is the Principal of Emerald Middle School, A California Blue Ribbon School in El Cajon, California
Board Approval:
August 18, 2011