The importance of offering personal development and leadership programs in middle and high schools
When is the right time for middle and high school students to learn about leadership, what it takes to be a leader, how to become an effective leader, invest time and energy into the art of personal development? I strongly believe that students should have an opportunity to engage in personal development and leadership activities early on in life, during and after school, in order to learn about leadership, begin developing their leadership skills, and personal development habits, while in school, prior to graduating and going off to college.
The issue that’s often observed is freshmen in their first year of college, do not have any or very limited knowledge of leadership, or what it takes to be one, which I believe takes away from students’ ability and opportunity to recognize the benefits of knowing, understanding, and practicing such important skills throughout their time in the middle and high school.
Some of the ways one can learn about and foster leadership and personal development skills in school is by joining and actively participating in different clubs and schools’ organizations, such as: Youth and Government, Teen Leadership, etc. should such clubs and organizations be available and offered in a particular school. Other ways to practice leadership skills in schools is through volunteering and helping other students and teachers during various school events throughout the school year.
There are many benefits in participating in clubs and activities such as those mentioned earlier, these benefits include but not limited to: developing and enhancing one’s confidence, boosting their self-esteem, learning about and practicing professionalism early in life, preparing themselves for the future, as well as developing and practicing their public speaking skills, just to name a few. Therefore, there’s no good reason for schools not to offer and for student not to be exposed to an opportunity to learning and developing their leadership skills early in life, and before they get out into the real world, post college, and face real pressures and obstacles that many of us face as your adults.
So, there seems to be only positive reasons for introducing and offering leadership and personal development programs in middle and high schools, providing opportunities for all students, in all schools, to begin building and strengthening their personal and professional skills while learning how to be a better leader.
Do you think it’s important for schools to offer leadership and personal development in middle and high schools?
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