Washington County to give $5,000 to Character Counts

January 31, 2001

Washington County to give $5,000 to Character Counts

By SCOTT BUTKI / Staff Writer

The Washington County Character Counts Coalition will receive $5,000 from the Washington County Commissioners to buy banners explaining the program's tenets.

The commissioners voted unanimously Tuesday to provide the money, which will come from their contingency fund.

After explaining the program, Carolyn Brooks, HotSpots coordinator and coalition co-chairwoman, made two request of the commissioners.

First she asked for money from the commissioners but did not specify an amount.

"How much? Anything you can get?" Commissioners President Gregory I. Snook asked.

The group has been promised $5,000 from the city of Hagerstown, Brooks said.

When the group gets the city check, the county will match it, Snook promised.

The group also wants to get on the list of county nonprofit agencies eligible to receive county donations from the general fund, Brooks said.


During an annual public hearing to be held later this year, the commissioners will hear requests of that type, Snook said. The county will give Brooks and Mary Ellen Waltemire, the coalition co-chairwoman, information on when to make that request of the commissioners, Snook said.

The coalition will use the city and county money to buy banners.

Six large color-coded banners, all bearing the name of one of the six pillars of the Character Counts program, have recently been put up at North Hagerstown High School.

The coalition can buy three sets of banners at $3,000 or 15 for $12,000, Brooks said. Each set includes six banners.

The Character Counts program is a national initiative. The goal of the program is to engage the community in working together to advance character education by teaching what has become known as the six pillars of good character: Trustworthiness, respect, responsibility, fairness, caring and citizenship.

The program will be two-years-old in April. It was officially endorsed by the Washington County Board of Education as a curriculum topic for the 2000-2001 school year.

Brooks has been incorporating it into her HotSpots program, and is working to integrate it into the business community as well.

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