Berea implemented leadership program last year
Representatives from Berea Independent Schools drew inspiration after visiting a Bowling Green “Leader in Me” school and began the program in its elementary school last year.
Superintendent Mike Hogg said the Seven Habits seemed to match up with the district’s goals for its students. In addition to advancing students academically, Berea wants to shape citizens who are “compassionate, critical thinkers and civically engaged,” Hogg said.
“Leader in Me” is not just another program, he said, it “impacts the culture of the school.”
Middle and high school teachers will begin implementing the program this year, which Hogg said will make Berea the only school district in the state using the “Leader in Me” program K-12.
“Beginning With the End in Mind” is a good habit for upperclassmen preparing to be college- and career-ready, Hogg said. “You might have a goal to attend Yale, but what are the steps to get you there? This is about empowering kids to be in control of their own destiny.”
He said since the program’s launch last year, both adults and children alike talk about the Seven Habits, emphasize them in the classroom and “make them a part of what we do.”
The whole-school model empowers children to initiate their own projects and “develop ideas for how they can help each other and help the community,” he said.
Last year, students initiated book drives, coat drives, food drives “and more service projects than we could possibly do,” Hogg said.
Students have taken over many leadership positions throughout the school, such as conducting the morning meeting in the gymnasium, passing around hand-outs, collecting notebooks or leading assemblies.
At Glenn Marshall Elementary, fifth-grade leaders gave Madison County Schools Superintendent Elmer Thomas and Chief Academic Officer David Gilliam a guided tour of the school on Friday, White said.
Students will be asked to take on more leadership roles as Glenn Marshall Elementary progresses through its three-year plan, she said.
Crystal Wylie can be reached at email@example.com or 623-1669, Ext. 6696