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Every Monday we have Commando Joe’s working in school to support our pupils Character Education.

Schools have a critical role to play in helping to shape rounded, determined young people who can face the challenges of the modern world with confidence. Providing opportunities and encouraging pupils to develop a wider set of skills and qualities such as resilience, leadership, communication, empathy and perseverance which, far from being a distraction from achievement, are vital for each pupil’s successful learning.

The renewed education attention to ‘character’ and research undertaken by Birmingham University supports our understanding that behaviour traits associated with character education are at the heart of successful learning. This personal development journey acts as a foundation for both individual achievement and interpersonal relationships.

Commando Joes aim to provide a character learning journey that can be personalised to the needs of children, whatever their background or circumstance - encouraging our children to think critically and develop a mindset that thrives on looking at themselves and others from different perspectives. The programme will contribute to cultural, physical, spiritual, moral and social wellbeing and play a part in extending each child’s understanding of British values.

Research helps us to understand what the best schools do to develop character and the need to provide more ‘space’ where young people can take time to explore a range of activities with decision making, philosophical and moral dilemmas at the heart of what they are doing.

The COJO Character Curriculum is based upon the following 4 principles –

1. Character development is a right for every child

2. Character education will empower young people

3. Character will inform the ethos, direction of learning and culture of the school

4. Character should be developed in partnership with staff, pupils and parents

The ultimate aim of character learning is the development of good sense and capacity to ‘think and choose intelligently’ between alternatives and it is with this aim in mind that the COJO Character Curriculum is based. Encouraging children to think differently and more deeply about their actions will be a significant element of the programme.

Creating the right environment for young people to develop positive character behaviours (traits) will enable them to respond well to challenges they face. Cooperating and learning with their peers in a safe environment, taking on enjoyable, relevant activities, will enable young people to make the right choices, supporting them in everyday life inside and outside school.

Central to the success of the COJO Character Curriculum is the effective use of relevant military ethos and values – where commitment, honesty, adaptability and courage are a pre requisite for the quality and success of all teams and people within them.

It is important to note that character is not a ‘one size fits all’ concept as it is the combination of behaviour traits that sets each person apart. How each school chooses to deliver the programme and integrate it across the curriculum, in a way best suited to both children and staff, will be critical to the programme’s impact and success.

The COJO Character for Learning programme will:

Provide a great foundation on which all children will get the chance to achieve, be resilient, tolerate others and make great choices for life - in and outside school.

This will be achieved through children:

  • Accessing coherent, sequential learning
  • Being inspired to do their best and have ambition to achieve
  • Leading and being led to achieve outcomes
  •  Engaging in deep thinking to support their decision-making and


  • Experiencing a wide range of relevant and exciting activity

The character behaviour traits below are divided into 7 categories linked to the COJO Character Curriculum programme’s central character – RESPECT. They include moral, performance, intellectual and relevant military behaviour traits that should not be seen as separate but be integrated to contribute to a child’s character learning and development.


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