Charleston Day School
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Faculty Features

Julie Tonks

January 1


Character Teacher and Community Service Coordinator


Bachelor’s Degree from UGA, Masters in Teaching from College of Charleston

years at cds:

This is my 12th year

why is it important for charleston day to teach character?

I believe that your fate and your legacy are ultimately defined by your character. With that type of importance, how can we not teach character? The tricky part is that the development of good character is an internal process: Only you can truly improve your character. I hope that our program encourages students to find and use their own particular strengths and talents to live out not only our mission of Scholarship, Integrity, Respect and Responsibility here at CDS, but also in the world beyond our gates.

what were you like as a child?

I laughed a lot. I was a good student, enjoyed school, and I loved to play outdoors. I was not athletically talented, but I got plenty of exercise. My two older brothers and I spent a great deal of time creating our own inventions, building things in a workshop, playing games, building forts, and creating our own backyard putt-putt golf course!

who are your role models? who inspires you?

I find role models everywhere! To name a few, my parents, my husband, my children, Mrs. Hawkins, Bill Gates, Mrs. Hopie Parker etc., etc. I am inspired by students who show kindness when they see someone hurting, who are brave against bullying, and who stand up for what is right (even if it is an adult who is being unkind or unfair).

what is your best advice for a student who is discouraged?

This too shall pass. Strive to get better, not bitter. Stress less, work more, and know that life is a work in progress. Focus on what you can do to get better, but know that your worth as a person is unrelated to grades or any current difficulty that you may be going through. You are a unique creation of worth and value just because you are you!!

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