Centre for Policy Studies in Education

Seminar on Character Education

Date: Monday 2nd March 2015 at 4.30pm
Location: Great Woodhouse Room, University House

Audio recording of the Seminar

Dr Karen Bohlin – Character Education: Promises and Pitfalls  [MP3: 31MB]

In announcing a new £3.5 million grant scheme to support character education projects, Education Secretary Nicky Morgan has set educators and researchers a task: to find ways to support children in developing character traits, behaviours and attributes that are believed to underpin success in education and work.

Please join us in discussing this important topic at our next CPSE seminar led by an international expert in the field.

Dr Karen Bohlin, Senior Scholar and Director Emeritus of the Center for Character and Social Responsibility at Boston University’s School of Education, and also the Head of Montrose School, a high school for girls in the USA.

Spaces are limited. Please RSVP to cpseleeds@leeds.ac.uk

Drawing upon both research and practice, Dr Bohlin is an expert on how parents, teachers and schools can enable children and young people to develop a range of virtues underpinning good character.

The DfE’s provision of £3.5M during 2015 for primary and secondary schools to develop character education indicate the policy relevance of this presentation. The promotion of character education, across the political spectrum, and the acknowledgement that this is critical to the success of children and young people both in and beyond school, ensure that this CPSE event will be of considerable interest to a wide range of professionals and academics working in the areas of schooling, education, childhood and youth.

Given the widespread groundswell of opinion in the UK (from parents to employers) that the education of young people should extend beyond the learning of academic subjects and vocational skills to the development of a range of character virtues (such as courage, resilience, humility, service, self-discipline and honesty) conducive to both individual and societal flourishing, this event represents an important opportunity to engage with matters of pressing concern at the very heart of education and schooling.

Dr Bohlin has recently edited, with three Japanese scholars, the book ‘Happiness and Virtue – Beyond East and West Toward a New Global Responsibility’. She has also written the US Foreword to Professor Mark Pike’s recently published book ‘Ethical English’ (Bloomsbury 2015) and is a project consultant on the ‘Narnian Virtues’ character education research project  in Yorkshire schools, led by the School of Education at the University of Leeds and funded by the John Templeton Foundation​.

Download Presentation Slides

For more on the UK Government’s  investment in character education, visit:

See also the recent CBI report ‘First Steps’ on the importance of character in vocational education, training and employment

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