COVEDALE, Ohio -- Michele Kip, principal of Covedale Elementary School, wants a new leadership program to teach her 600 students "they are an important, impactful part of the community in which they live" -- even if they're too young to vote, drive or hold jobs.
"They don't have to wait until they're a grown-up to have a significant difference in the area in which they live," she said. "They can make that difference every day starting now."
Covedale Elementary this year became the latest of Cincinnati's public schools to implement The Leader In Me, a program that adapts self-help guru Stephen Covey's 7 Habits for Highly Effective People for the under-18 set.
Kipp and her staff will help guide students through a process that includes studying past leaders, learning how to deal with challenges in their daily lives, using new technology to solve problems and creating things that benefit people around them.
The final crystallization of that mission will be a garden in front of the school that reflects its history as well as that of the surrounding neighborhood.
"There's schools that specialize in science and technology and math," Kipp said. "we don't hear about schools that specialize in learning about history and understanding our presence."
Now, you've heard of one. Kipp wants to make sure you remember it -- and that her students become people of whom the entire Covedale community can be proud.