Leadership and Life Skills Inspire Young Students to be 21st Century Leaders with The Leader in Me Process
Tuesday, March 15, 2016 Sharon Shannon Elementary announced today the school has been named as a Leader in Me Lighthouse School by Franklin Covey Co. (NYSE: FC). This recognition comes because the school has achieved outstanding results in school and student outcomes, by implementing The Leader in Me process with fidelity. It is also because of the extraordinary impact the school is having on staff, students, parents, and the greater community.
Sean Covey, Education Practice Leader, Franklin Covey, said, “We are thrilled to recognize Sharon Shannon Elementary as a Leader in Me Lighthouse School. Schools who achieve the Lighthouse Milestone are great examples of a strong leadership model, process, and of what it means to be a Leader in Me school. This school has experienced transformational results by implementing the principles and practices related to The Leader in Me. We are so pleased to celebrate the success they are experiencing.”
Carla Bennett, principal of Sharon Shannon Elementary said, “We are honored to become a Leader in Me Lighthouse School. We have seen such amazing results from implementing The Leader in Me process at our school, such as students taking ownership of their learning and the confidence and leadership skills students have acquired. One example is a student who was new to us last year from a school where he had been since kindergarten. As you can imagine he was very timid and anxious. His teacher nominated him to be on the student lighthouse council in hopes that it would build his confidence. Through this leadership opportunity the students began to gain confidence, made new friends and even became a tour guide for our Leadership Day. This process not only has had a significant impact on this student, but on all students. And, we expect to see greater results over time.”
The Leader in Me is a whole-school transformation model—developed in partnership with educators—that empowers students with the leadership and life skills they need to thrive in the 21st century. It is based on secular principles and practices of personal, interpersonal, and organizational effectiveness. Distinct in several ways, The Leader in Me:
- Starts from a powerful premise—that every child possesses unique strengths and has the ability to be a leader. This premise shapes the views of staff to value and develop the whole child.
- Integrates leadership development into existing school programs, curricula, and traditions in a way that does not feel like “one more thing.” More than a program, The Leader in Me serves as a foundational operating system for the school, improving relationships, transforming culture, and highly motivating staff members and students.
- Helps students learn how to become self-reliant, take initiative, plan ahead, set and track goals, do their homework, prioritize their time, manage their emotions, be considerate of others, express their viewpoint persuasively, resolve conflicts, find creative solutions, value differences, and live a balanced life. In short, The Leader in Me helps students develop the skills and self-confidence they need to lead their lives and succeed in school and beyond.
- Impacts all stakeholders starting first with the staff of a school, then moving out to students, their families, and the community at large. This inside-out approach is a key ingredient to successfully creating positive change in a school.
The Leader in Me utilizes and integrates several leadership, social-emotional learning, quality, and educational models and processes from past and current thought leaders including The 4 Imperatives of Great Leaders and The 4 Disciplines of Execution. The process includes student participation in goal setting, data tracking, leadership roles, Student-Led Conferences, leadership environments, and Leadership Events. The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People is also a key component of the overall Leader in Me process and is a synthesis of universal, timeless principles of personal, interpersonal, and organizational effectiveness such as responsibility, vision, integrity, teamwork, collaboration, and renewal, which are secular in nature and common to all people and cultures.The Leader in Me differs from other whole-school transformation processes in that it offers a holistic, schoolwide experience for staff, students, and parents, and creates a common language and culture within the school. The leadership principles and lessons are not taught as a curriculum, but instead are incorporated into coursework, traditions, systems, and culture.
The Leader in Me process is implemented as follows:
- School staff identify a new vision of the outcomes they want for their school (e.g., decreasing discipline referrals).
- School staff learn The Leader in Me principles and tools and begin incorporating the leadership principles in their work and relationships (e.g., learning how to work more cooperatively with each other).
- School staff model the behaviors to their students.
- Teachers are taught how to incorporate the leadership principles and tools into school culture and curricula.
- Key elements of the leadership model are implemented into the school, including:
- Teaching students how to set, track, and achieve goals in a Leadership Notebook.
- Reinventing the physical environment to reinforce the vision and outcomes for the school (banners, signs, murals).
- Holding Student-Led Conferences, which are similar to parent-teacher conferences, yet are different in that the student takes ownership of the conference.
- Giving each student a leadership role within the school.
- Holding student-led Leadership Events.
- Using a common language of leadership.
- Parents also play an important role in supporting their children in the process.
- School staff, students, and parents utilize a number of resources (lesson plans, videos, student activity guides, Teacher Editions, posters, books, and www.theleaderinme.org to help them implement and reinforce the process.
The Lighthouse Milestone is a highly regarded standard set by FranklinCovey that is attainable by every The Leader in Me school. The attainment of the Lighthouse Milestone represents a significant benchmark, and it is evidence that a high standard has been met by a school. Applying for the Lighthouse Milestone typically occurs three to five years after a school begins The Leader in Me process.
Becoming a Lighthouse School is a recognition that schools earn because they have produced outstanding results in school and student outcomes, by implementing The Leader in Me process with fidelity. More than 100 schools have achieved this prestigious milestone. The designation is given to schools that have demonstrated the following:
- The school campus environment reinforces the leadership model by displaying leadership language that emphasizes individual worth and potential in hallways and classrooms.
- Teachers integrate leadership language into school curriculum and instruction.
- Staff collaborates and works together to effectively build a culture of leadership.
- Students are provided with meaningful student leadership roles and responsibilities, such as mentor, public speaker, school tour guide, and greeter.
- Parents are given opportunities to learn The Leader in Me model and the 7 Habits and are involved in activities that support the leadership model.
- A system is in place for setting and tracking school-wide, classroom, academic, and personal goals.
- Leadership events are held to allow students to practice their leadership skills (e.g. public speaking, sharing data, confident greetings, etc.) with community business partners, parents, and other educators.
- The school leadership team meets regularly and oversees school-wide implementation of the leadership model with the help of students, staff, parents, and community members.
- Measureable improvements in teacher engagement, parent satisfaction, student behavior, and academic alignment are shown by comparing baseline data with the tracking of ongoing data.
Leader in Me schools, which have implemented the process with fidelity, report increases in the following: student self-confidence, teamwork, initiative, responsibility, creativity, self-direction, leadership, problem-solving and communication for children of all ages, socio-economic levels, learning capacities and cultural backgrounds.
Schools also report achievement in the following key outcomes: fewer discipline referrals and suspensions; improved teacher, student, parent satisfaction and engagement; general student behavioral improvement; improved student leadership skills; enhanced school culture; and increased student self-directed learning.
Based on the results of a recent random survey of 260 The Leader in Me principals conducted by Westgate Research, Inc., 99 percent of principals reported that The Leader in Me had a “very positive” or “positive” impact in their school and 87 percent said they were “extremely likely” to recommend The Leader in Me to another school principal. Additionally, there are several multi-year studies underway by universities and FranklinCovey continues to collaborate with independent institutions to measure and evaluate the impact of The Leader in Me process.
Since its official launch nearly six years ago, nearly 2,000 public, private, charter, and magnet schools across 35 countries have adopted The Leader in Me. Educators continue to offer feedback on best practices, which provides continuous improvement and refinement of the process.
About Franklin Covey Co.
Franklin Covey Co. (NYSE: FC) is a global, public company (NYSE:FC) specializing in performance improvement. We help organizations and individuals achieve results that require a change in human behavior. Our expertise is in seven areas: leadership, execution, productivity, trust, sales performance, customer loyalty and education. Franklin Covey clients have included 90 percent of the Fortune 100, more than 75 percent of the Fortune 500, thousands of small and mid-sized businesses, as well as numerous government entities and educational institutions. Franklin Covey has more than 100 direct and partner offices providing professional services in over 150 countries and territories.