This comprehensive resource examines lessons from the private sector, provides case studies of "star" principals, and offers reflection questions for more effective application of leadership principles.

Be Ambitious First for the School's Success

Be ambitious first for the school's success

Great ambition is the passion of a great character. Those endowed with it may perform very good or very bad acts. All depends on the principles which direct them.

—Napoleon I, French emperor (1769–1821)

Ambition, after all, is a healthy sentiment, is it not? The word ambition shares a root with the Latin verb ambire, “to go around,” and is defined as “the act of soliciting for votes” (Merriam-Webster's, 2003, p. 39). That word was first used in the fourteenth century, when politicians would travel from place to place to get votes and support. Ambition is not a single-minded focus, a career fixation, or unbridled promotion of oneself at the expense of others. ...

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