A Whole-School Transformation Process

The Leader in Me is FranklinCovey’s whole school transformation process. It teaches 21st century leadership and life skills to students and creates a culture of student empowerment based on the idea that every child can be a leader.

Started by Educators

In an effort to turn around her failing school, Muriel Summers, Principal of A.B. Combs Leadership Magnet Elementary School in Raleigh, N.C., identified leadership as her school magnet theme based on community feedback. She approached FranklinCovey as a partner in designing, developing and implementing a leadership model for her school, which drew on The 7 Habits and also incorporated Baldridge quality tools and other educational best practices.

Within a few years, A.B. Combs experienced what they viewed as a complete turnaround, ultimately being named #1 Magnet School in the U.S., twice.

Teaching Students 21st Century Leadership and Life Skills

When Principal Muriel Summers asked parents and business leaders what they wanted in their schools, what she heard reinforced what most people believe—that our schools should not merely be focused on improving test scores, but should provide opportunities for students to develop their full potential.

  • Leadership
  • Responsibility
  • Accountability
  • Problem Solving
  • Adaptability
  • Communication
  • Initiative and Self-Direction
  • Creativity
  • Cross-Cultural Skills
  • Teamwork

Using Best-Practices and Universal Principles

The Leader in Me is aligned with best-in-class content and concepts practiced by global education thought leaders. It provides a logical, sequential and balanced process to help schools proactively design the culture that reflects their vision of the ideal school.

Content from The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People is a key component of the overall The Leader in Me process. The 7 Habits is a synthesis of universal, timeless principles of personal and interpersonal effectiveness, such as responsibility, vision, integrity, teamwork, collaboration and renewal, which are secular in nature and common to all people and cultures.

Click here for a synopsis of the habits in kids’ language.

The Leader in Me is also aligned to many national and state academic standards, including Common Core standards. The process teaches students the skills needed for academic success in any setting. These skills include critical thinking, goal setting, listening and speaking, self-directed learning, presentation-making and the ability to work in groups.

And a New Mindset

Instead of seeing children through the lens of a normal distribution curve—some kids are naturally smart and others are not—The Leader in Me paradigm sees that every child is capable, every child is a leader. This paradigm changes everything.

Paradigm of Leadership: Everyone can be a leader. Paradigm of Potential: Everyone has Genius. Paradigm of Change: Change starts with me. Paradigm of Motivation: Educators empower students to lead their own learning. Paradigm of Education: Develop the whole person.

Expanding Around the Globe

What would be possible if your school were filled with students who were responsible, who showed initiative, who were creative, who knew how to set goals and meet them, who got along with people of various backgrounds and cultures, and who could resolve conflicts and solve problems?

Since its official launch in 2009, over 2,000 public, private, charter and magnet schools across 35 countries have adopted The Leader in Me process.

“We only get one chance to prepare children for a world none of us can possibly predict, what are we going to do with that one chance?”

—Principal Muriel Summers,  A.B. Combs Elementary
The A.B. Combs Story
The A.B. Combs Story
The A.B. Combs Story
Introduction to TLIM