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Forest City-Dunbar Elementary School
Together We Can
Leader In Me

What is the Leader in Me?


The Leader in Me is a whole-school transformation model that produces results such as high academic achievement, fewer discipline problems, and increased engagement among teachers and parents. By teaching 21st century leadership and life sills to students, The Leader in Me Process creates a culture of student empowerment based on the idea that every child can be a leader.


It began in 1999 at A.B. Combs Elementary in our state of North Carolina. Principal Muriel Summers asked parents and business leaders what they wanted in their schools. The feedback was clear: our schools should not merely be concerned with improving test scores, but should provide opportunities for students to develop their full potential and become well-rounded, productive community members. She and her staff taught the 7 Habits not as a curriculum but in a ubiquitous fashion, integrating them into the curriculum, traditions, systems, and culture of A.B. Combs. 


As of Today, there are 1,900+ schools around the world using The Leader in me Process to grow the next generation of leaders! Forest City-Dunbar Elementray is one of two schools in Rutherford County using The Leader in Me Process.

7 Habits Implementation


Forest City-Dunbar Elementary began implementing THE LEADER IN ME program at all grade levels in 2014.  On this page you will find information about the seven habits.  


The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People

Habit 1: Be Proactive

Defined: I am a responsible person. I take initiative. I choose my actions, attitudes, and moods. I do not blame others for my wrong actions. I do the right thing without being asked, even when no one is looking. 

Habit 2: Begin With the End in Mind

Defined: I plan ahead and set goals. I do things that have meaning and make a difference. I am an important part of my classroom and contribute to my school's mission and vision. I look for ways to be a good citizen.

Habit 3: Put First Things First

Defined: I spend my time on things that are most important. This means I say no to the things I know I should not do. I set priorities, make a schedule, and follow my plan. I am disciplined and organized.

Habit 4: Think Win-Win

Defined: I balance courage for getting what I want with consideration for what others want. When conflicts arise, I look for a win-win solution.

Habit 5: Seek First to Understand, Then to Be Understood

Defined: I listen to other people's ideas and feelings. I try to see things from their viewpoint (paradigm). I listen to others without interrupting. I listen with my ears, my eyes, and my heart. I am confident voicing my ideas.

Habit 6: Synergize

Defined: I value other people's strengths and learn from them. I get along well with others, even people who are different than me. I work well in groups. I seek out other people's ideas because I know that by teaming with others, we can create better solutions than any one of us can alone. I look for Third Alternatives. 

Habit 7: Sharpen the Saw

Defined: I take care of my body by eating right, exercising, and getting enough sleep (body). I learn in lots of ways and lots of places, not just at school (brain). I spend time with family and friends (heart). I take time to find meaningful ways to help people (soul). I balance all four parts of myself.

Copyright: Franklin Covey


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