Utah schools win national honor for building character

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Two Utah schools are among 24 nationwide being recognized as 2012 National Schools of Character.

Blessed Sacrament Catholic School in Sandy and Mountainville Academy charter school in Alpine have won the honor. Each year, the Washington, D.C.- based Character Education Partnership, a nonprofit, nonpartisan coalition of organizations, selects schools and districts for the recognition based on an evaluation process.

To win the honor, schools must show that their focus on character development has improved academic achievement, student behavior and school climate.

"These schools have built strong communities that bring people together around shared goals," said a news release quoting Lara Maupin, program director. "Nobody feels alone or unwelcome in these schools. Adults are all on the same page about what's important and, as a result, kids thrive."