Unique to Montrose: Character & Leadership Discussions

Character & Leadership Discussions, part of our nationally recognized LifeCompass charater and leadership program, take place regularly at Montrose. CLDs promote reflection, goal-setting and the good habits of great leaders.

Discussions include the following themes:

  • What choices do I make in the face of new academic challenges?
  • What choices do I make in the face of time pressure?
  • What choices do I make to ensure thoughtful rather than impulsive decisions?
  • What choices do I make in the face of stress?
  • What choices do I make in the face of injustice?
  • What choices do I make in the face of adversity?

Some examples of CLD topics




Courage, Time Management


Fair-mindedness, Citizenship


Gratitude, Diligence


Generosity, Kindness


Resilience, Fortitude


Friendship, Empathy


Self-mastery, Self-giving


Loyalty, Hope

Good Judgment, Joy


List of 6 frequently asked questions.

  • Q. What is a CLD?

    A CLD, or Character & Leadership Discussion, is a thoughtful conversation held in each grade once every seven-day cycle.
  • Q. What is the purpose of CLDs?

    CLDs encourage discussion and dialogue in order to heighten awareness of the practical, daily ways that good or bad habits of mind and character can influence our decisions, our work and our relationships.
  • Q. What happens during CLDs?

    Usually, CLDs include a short reading, reflection, and discussion led by the grade-level mentor or guest presenter.
  • Q. How do CLDs benefit students?

    CLDs help students to understand the character virtues and intellectual virtues, reflect on their relevance in their academic and personal lives and set goals so they can make them their own.

    Through open and informal dialogue and debate, CLDs help prepare students to see the need for and practice virtue in the “ground zero” of teenage existence: those venues in the lives of young people where vital issues of character are constantly being challenged.
  • Q. What are intellectual virtues?

    Some examples of intellectual virtues are attentiveness, intellectual thoroughness, curiosity, open-mindedness and intellectual carefulness.
  • Q. What are character virtues?

    Some examples of character virtues are gratitude, loyalty, good judgment, fortitude, responsibility and self-mastery.