Leadership Day 2018

‘I Believe in the Power of Yet’
Posted on 03/27/2018

MAP scores and attendance at Eugene Field have increased while discipline referrals have gone down over the past several years, but perhaps more importantly, students are graduating the elementary school with tools to succeed in life.

Themed “I Believe in the Power of Yet,” the fifth annual Leadership Day on Thursday, March 22, featured songs, skits and videos of students showcasing the difference between having a growth versus a fixed mindset. Seven visiting schools exploring the program were in attendance, including North Elementary in Jackson, which has just completed the book study. 

Leadership Day participants experienced the impact of the Leader in Me under which Eugene Field has achieved lighthouse status, the gold standard of the initiative. The teaching philosophy is based on Dr. Stephen Covey’s best-selling book, “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People.” 

“I can’t explain this. It would hardly (make sense) unless you watch the kids—they are just amazing,” said Dora Cole, a member of St. Andrew Lutheran Church. “I never watched kids grow like they do here. They are so confident with theirselves.” 

One of the habits students practice is to synergize. Cole, who accepted the award of Leader of the Year for the church’s long-standing school sponsorship, half-jokingly commented how she did not learn that word until she was in her 40s. And here students, grades 1-3, are showcasing their understanding of the value of working together. 

First time attendee Dr. Ron Webb, pastor of Mt. Calvary Powerhouse Church, has authored a series of books, most recently: “Leadership from Behind the Scenes.” During the classroom tour portion of the program, Webb stated: “This is where it starts.” 

Mayor Ed DeGaris has witnessed Leadership Day for the past few years. A graduate of the elementary school himself, DeGaris is the grandfather of second grader Ashton, his third grandchild to attend Eugene Field. Asked if the seven habits are spoken about at home, DeGaris replied without hesitation: “All the time.”

Also an alumnus, Gabriel Burke—now a Poplar Bluff Middle School student—provided a testimonial during the show, attributing his success as an A honor roll student who is active in the Junior Beta Club to the Leader in Me program.

“I was shy, scared and bashful,” Gabriel recalled. “The seven habits helped me be more social and active.” 


Cutline: Students take guests on classroom tours to display the projects they have been working diligently on.

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