Local school adopts Leader in Me initiative

Local school adopts Leader in Me initiative

Breadcrumb Trail Links News Local News Photo Provided Students at Our Lady of Lourdes French Immersion School are delighted to be taking part in the Leader in Me program. content of the article

The French Immersion School Our Lady of Lourdes has adopted the Leader in Me program.

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Vice Principal Nadia Zanatta said her school is only the second to join the leadership process within the Huron Superior Catholic School Board. St. Basil in Sault Ste. Marie started the program six years ago.

“It aligns with our vision, the outreach we do, the leadership opportunities we give our students, so it aligns really well with what we’re already doing,” she said.

Zanatta said the program teaches fundamental principles and skills that are widely recognized as essential to personal leadership.

“It builds leadership and life skills in the students. It creates a trusting school culture and lays the foundation for academic success.”

All Our Lady of Lourdes staff have been training and preparing for the leadership program since last June with the help of a trainer and mentor who will be available to the school for three years.

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The program was presented to students at a school assembly in January. From now until June, students will be exposed to the seven habits to become part of their knowledge base. The second year will expand and build on this base.

Zanatta said she is part of the Lighthouse team, which consists of diverse staff who oversee the three components of leadership, culture and academics, developing programs for the school, facilitating activities and rolling out the process.

Since the start of the program and the many exhibitions in the school, the deputy principal said, “the children are very curious, they are excited.”

As for what the initiative will mean for the school, Zanatta said, “This will really show the leadership skills of our students because everyone has the ability to lead.”

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She said that instead of the principal or an 8th grader giving a school tour, a 4th grader will have the ability and confidence to give one to a family.

“You all have the skills to do that now and to teach them that the school experience brings in the culture of the school, the leadership you possess and build on, and the academic success because if you feel safe and you are excited to come a place you love…then you will be academically successful,” Zanatta said.

“Teaching the 7 Habits of Highly Effective People will have a tremendous impact on how we function as a school community and how students learn by empowering them to fully participate in the school’s leadership culture,” said Principal Stephane Prevost.

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“The energy this generates throughout our school, our staff, students and families is remarkable,” he said.

Chantal Tellier, Lighthouse team coordinator, said: “While we have done our best to describe what is to come, students have no idea the impact Leader in Me will have on our school environment. Each adult has been given the ability to apply, encourage, and nurture the 7 Habits in the Leader-in-Me process so that each child finds their inner leadership.”

The Leader in Me program began at AB Combs Elementary School in North Carolina in 1999 when principal Muriel Summers decided to use FranklinCovey’s The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People and other educational best practices to help her academic failure.

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Within a few years, the school experienced a significant turnaround, reporting improved academic performance, increased enrollment, increasing parent and teacher satisfaction, and higher student self-confidence. Several other schools across the country replicated Summers’ leadership model and began to see similar results.

Based on requests from Summers and other educators, FranklinCovey codified Summers’ process and created Leader in Me so that other schools could implement the same leadership model and achieve similar results.

According to their website, Leaders in Me schools provide a framework for embedding high-impact practices throughout the school culture. Rather than just focusing on academic measures, Leader in Me embodies a holistic approach to education, redefining how schools measure success.

This approach empowers educators with effective practices and tools to instill leadership skills in every student, create a culture of student empowerment, and align systems to achieve academic results.

Leader in Me has since been adopted by thousands of schools in more than 50 countries.

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