Dr. Lois DaSilva-Knapton, Superintendent of Schools, 860-546-6950
Mrs. Dottie Horn, Executive Assistant to the Superintendent
CPS Mission Statement:
In collaboration with our community, the Canterbury Public Schools will develop, foster, and cultivate all students to their highest potential, through rigorous academics within a safe, nurturing, and respectful environment.
Superintendent’s Message by Dr. Lois DaSilva-Knapton
Welcome to our web site. We hope you find it user friendly and full of information. We will strive to keep this website updated in a timely fashion and we will use this website to communicate all school events.
We will continue to focus on shifting from a rules-driven school culture to a values-driven school culture and finding creative ways to combine academic success with mental well-being.
“In traditional academic settings, power flows from individuals in positions of authority, including administrators and teachers. In self-governing classrooms, the primary source of power flows from a set of values-inspired ideas.” (Bowman, 2016). Therefore, the students have more ownership of the classroom.
Shifting from a rule-oriented to a values-driven school culture requires looking for the underlying principle in existing rules. For example, the don’t-put-your-feet-on-the-furniture rule is about a positive societal value – Respect our common spaces.
Here’s an elementary school sample of Values-inspired Rules :
– One’s words and hands should help others to do the right thing, not hurt them in any way.
– Treat others with respect and respect others’ things
– Take personal responsibility for each of your actions by asking, “Is this who I am?”
– Be a promise keeper.
Bowman believes there are only three ways to get students to do the right thing in classrooms: coercion, motivation, and inspiration.
Coercion and motivation depend on external punishments and rewards, these are “expensive” in terms of teacher time and effort, and tend to be unsustainable. Inspiration, on the other hand, is “internal, intrinsic, and enduring… there is an overarching sense of the mutuality, common purpose, and collective responsibility required for deep learning”
This type of environment encourages students to be reflective learners and ask themselves, “What am I doing” and “Why am I doing this”
I am encouraging us to choose inspiration.
Once again I thank the town for working so closely with the school system. As I enter my sixth year as Superintendent in Canterbury, I’m still glad to call this my home.
***“Why School Rules Fail: Causes and Consequences” by Richard Bowman in Kappa Delta Pi Record, July-September 2016 (Vol. 52, #3, p. 100-105), available for purchase at
http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/00228958.2016.1191891; Bowman can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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