Professional Excellence

CHA Characteristics of Professional Excellence


  • Curricular and pedagogic expertise: Knowledgeable and passionate about subjects; up-to-date on best practices; knows where students are, where they need to be, and how to get each one there
  • Classroom management: Sets clear and consistent expectations for student behavior; creates classroom routines and systems that set the stage for learning; uses behavior modification strategies for individual students as needed
  • Nurturing and engaging: Cares about students on a personal level; builds relationships with students; creates an environment where students are excited to learn and actively participate
  • Effective communicator: Seeks first to understand, then to be understood (active listening); communicates ideas and information clearly to students, parents, colleagues and administration; works out problems effectively in a positive way; maintains regular, substantive parent newsletter/blog that provides  a window into the classroom


  • Personable and professional: Positive, approachable, reliable, punctual; fulfills one’s responsibilities; adheres to guidelines of the Staff Handbook; maintains appropriate boundaries with parents and students
  • Collaborative and flexible: Works as part of a team to plan major class activities, shares materials and time, and reciprocates favors; willing to change plans as needed and handles unexpected hiccups with poise and a smile
  • Creative and innovative: Thrives on the freedom to create original student-centered projects; uses multiple strategies to foster student creativity and innovation
  • Growth mindset: Sees oneself as a lifelong learner; unafraid to fail and also encourages students to take risks; open to new/others’ ideas and to change; cognizant of mindset messages in one’s speech



  • School involvement: Participation in school assemblies and events with spirit; participation in faculty committees; being part of the team

Belief in the school’s mission: Values the benefits of a dual curriculum; incorporates CHA character traits (orange card) into lessons; acts as an ambassador for the school