Leader in Me coach and consultant for FranklinCovey Diane Vance poses with ECES academic specialist Susan Collins. During the school’s Leadership Day, Vance announced that ECES has been designated a Lighthouse School.

East Cheatham Elementary School has become Tennessee’s third Lighthouse School, it was announced at the school’s Leadership Day on Thursday March 7 by Diane Vance, Leader in Me coach and consultant for FranklinCovey.

During the Leadership Day program, Cheatham County Director of Schools Dr. Cathy Beck announced that Principal Wendy Cox is the principal of the year.

In 2016, ECES became a “Leader in Me” school through participation in a program based on “7 Successful Habits of Happy Kids” by Sean Covey. A Lighthouse School must meet nine criteria for activities such as a strong leadership environment, student leadership, teaching leadership in the everyday curriculum, parent involvement and sponsoring leadership events.

 “Normally it takes five years and often even more to achieve Lighthouse status,” Vance said.

After the announcement, a tearful Cox also cited the huge leaps in achievement testing that have taken place over the past three years.

“We are so excited for the transformation we have seen,” said Cox in a statement submitted to promote Leadership Day. “Our school has grown academically, culturally, and in our leadership abilities. Being named a Lighthouse School means that you are beacon of success. This provides an exemplary model for other schools across the world to look to our school for guidance and influence.”

The entire Leadership Day program in the ECES gymnasium was led by students.

Cox has often stated that she came to ECES to make a difference and hoped that the “Leader in Me” program would play a part in that process.

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