Teachers are leaders. Every leader is at times a leader and at times a follower. No one can leader at every moment, and when leadership is spread out with people at all “levels” taking leadership initiative, no one person or group should ever try to lead everything all of the time.

This book is designed to assist teachers and our valiant PreK-12 educational system operate at a more effective level in the future. Every sector, every industry, every group, including teachers, must strive for improvement. The number of teachers quitting this most important profession is unacceptable. The number of teachers who do think of themselves as leaders is unacceptable.

We invite you on a journey of a lifetime and the lifetimes of all those who come into contact with you as you teach and lead America to a greater future, a more perfect union. This book is a start for you the teacher and for us, the authors, on this journey. The exercises we have put into this book, the leadership theory and best practices, and the four levels of leadership we have described, will be with you every step of the way as you become a better leader.

We invite you to participate as a leader, in your school, in every organization where you participate, in your family, in your communities, on the web, and in all outlets that serve you and serve the profession that serves us all. We want you to take the initiative and not wait for others to say that it is “OK” for you to be a leader.

A starter kit of leadership development exercises is spelled out below in Appendix A. Today, you embark on a step that will transform your lives and the lives of all you touch. Leadership development is not just for “exemplary” teachers. It is for every teacher in PreK-12 education. Leadership development is the path to becoming an exemplary teacher in an exemplary school.

We can only conclude this book with one statement:

Thank you for being our teachers and thank you for being a leader.