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Student Leadership: How We Develop Leadership Skills in School

15 May 2024


Leaders are often made, not born. In our rapidly developing world, having strong leadership abilities can help our students truly prosper. The quickest way to cultivate these good habits in them is by creating a school culture that supports and nourishes student leadership.

Having student leadership opportunities helps pupils learn how to form and build relationships with others, define their identities, and how to delegate and complete tasks effectively. We create these opportunities by appointing class leaders and peer support leaders, giving them the chance to show off and develop their own skills.

What is Student Leadership?


Student leadership is when pupils are in a position where they can influence, motivate, and guide their peers. For example, becoming a club president, class chairman, or even a group project leader are ways pupils can be involved in student leadership. 

What Does Student leadership Accomplish?

1. Exposes Students to New Experiences

Children are guided by parents and teachers from a young age. However, by giving them the chance to navigate social interactions with their classmates and peers, they'll be able to learn new insights on their own.

Introducing student leadership positions to them in school helps to reverse the roles and allows pupils to take ownership of their learning and develop their own identities and sense of responsibility.

2. Teaches Students About Interpersonal Relationships

When placed into leadership roles, pupils will have to interact and socialise with others in their team. This teaches them the importance of interpersonal relationships, letting them know how to get everyone on the same track and how to effectively build connections. Student leadership can help toughen them for adult life, teaching them how to lead others before they even start working.

3. Builds Confidence

Student leaders often have to address and manage a group of people, as well as help organise activities or events. Being part of a student leadership committee is an important responsibility. To be able to carry out those tasks, pupils need to have a certain level of confidence. Going through this leadership training helps to develop their self-confidence and cultivates a deeper sense of maturity.

What Makes a Good Student Leader?


There are several factors that showcase exemplary leadership:

1. Being Authentic

Anyone can become a leader, but not everyone can be a good leader. To become a good student leader, one needs to stay authentic. Putting up a façade makes one seem less trustworthy, and if the followers do not trust the student leader, it is hard for the student leader to lead. Staying authentic earns people’s trust and helps the leader perform better when they have the support of others.

2. Being Receptive to Feedback

A student leader will sometimes hear criticisms and even face pushback from their followers, so it is important to have an open mind and always listen to the opinions of others. Becoming used to handling suggestions creates a comfortable environment for others and is therefore an important aspect of becoming a good student leader.

3. Admitting To Mistakes

No one likes to admit that they are wrong but knowing when to accept fault is an important trait to have as a student leader. Learning from mistakes and avoiding them in the future is a mark of a good student leader. Having the willingness to take responsibility and proactively plan for the future is how a good student leader improves. 

Through our student leadership programme, we aim to guide students in their personal growth and help them accomplish these three principles.

Developing Leadership Skills Through Extracurricular Activities


Plenty of student leadership opportunities are present during extracurricular activities. These activities help pupils become self-aware of existing leadership skills and nurture them so they can become better leaders.

1. Joining the Student Council

Taking part in the student council gives students the opportunity to positively impact their peers. Active participation in school affairs helps them build a sense of responsibility, and they get to make decisions for the benefit of their fellow students.

2. Becoming a Team Leader

For more active pupils, being a part of a sports team teaches them how to work with others to strive for a common goal, learn how to delegate positions based on each other’s strengths and weaknesses, and how to strategize for a match. Joining a sports team can thereby propel a pupil's leadership skills through the spirit of teamwork and sportsmanship.

3. Become a Prefect

As prefects are normally voted in by their classmates, they are likely to already display signs of a leader. They might already be naturally good at listening to others, are responsible for their actions, or communicate their thoughts effectively. Joining prefect programmes which serve the student body can help further develop these skills, transforming them from a good pupil to a good student leader.

Examples of Student Leadership?


Student leadership can be nurtured via many school activities. Here are a few examples of how pupils built their leadership skills in school:

Example 1 - Andrea is a House Captain and her duties are to maintain discipline and to lead her House in school events and activities. Through this leadership role, she learnt how to be a confident speaker who can converse with pupils and teachers alike. She also makes sure that the pupils in her house actively participate in events and find ways to encourage and motivate them. 

Example 2 - Daniel is a prefect who serves as a role-model to other students. He observes and adheres to the school rules, maintains excellent grades, and carries a positive attitude. Daniel also mentors and helps others to become the best version of themselves.

Creating Student Leaders at Invictus International School Singapore


At Invictus Singapore, we make use of student leadership programmes and community engagement activities to give students practical experience in taking charge of their own learning. Programmes such as our house system and prefect system are designed to help pupils achieve their maximum potential in leadership positions by allowing collaborative activities and encouraging risk-taking.

To find out more about the school and how our programmes can help your child become a better leader, book a tour with us today.