Young leaders emerging in the Cedar Valley - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Young leaders emerging in the Cedar Valley


"The Leader In Me" is a partnership between the Chamber of Commerce and schools in the Cedar Valley.

This is the first whole year North Cedar Elementary in Cedar Falls has taken on the leadership project and students are taking on a whole new attitude.

Don't be alarmed when you walk into North Cedar Elementary in Cedar Falls and you hear this language.

"Number one is be proactive."

"Begin with the end in mind, have a plan."

"Work first, then play."

"Think win, win."

"Sharpen the saw."

"Seek first to understand, then to be understood."


This language is thanks to Stephen R. Covey's book "The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People."

 "It's just a way of life for us. It's not a curriculum, not an add on, it's just what we do here at North Cedar," said Jennifer Hartman, Principal.

The whole leadership program is called "The Leader In Me." Basically it's implementing those seven skills into the students every day lives.

Bob Justis, President/CEO of the Greater Cedar Valley Chamber of Commerce heard about the program at a conference.

After visiting the first school that first implemented the program, he just knew he had to bring it to the Cedar Valley.

"It really does boost their ability to communicate. It's impacting in a positive way for families and down the road of course this is what it is all about, developing leaders and so from a business standpoint, workforce development standpoint it's an important thing to do," said Justis.

The kids say the program is really working.

"Some people in my class who have been the biggest trouble makers since kindergarten have really started to shape up a little bit and now they are really paying attention a lot more in class," said Mallorie Sckerl, North Cedar student.

"I would think of kids some as mean and some as nice and I would hang out with the nice ones, but now that kids have been taking it into their own hands there are a lot of kids you can hand out with now and it if fun," said Brady Hoth, North Cedar student.

Cunningham School in Waterloo is also implementing "The Leader In Me" program.

More than 200 schools across the world have been putting Stephen Covey's leadership teachings into practice.

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