Tag: High School Summer Program

Summer Leadership Academy: 2017 Report

The Leadership Society of Arizona (LSA) is a federal 501(c)3 non-profit leadership education organization. The fundamental idea behind the summer leadership academy is simple: if we want to change the world, we must first be the change ourselves.

LSA employs an industry-tested, no-influence leadership model sourced from 25 years of professional and academic research at Arizona State University. The model  on over 1,900 projects delivering $6.8B worth of services in 9 countries and 43 states, with a 98% customer satisfaction rating. It is also the most licensed technology out of ASU (54 licenses). This model has been taught to over 1,600 college students over the last 7 years with a satisfaction rating 96%. LSA adapted this model for high school students and has taught over 500 students in 4 years with a satisfaction rating of 96%. Students who understand this model can learn new concepts 10 times faster. Using this model, LSA shows students how to enact simple changes in their daily lives to cultivate life-long leadership skills proven to make individuals more successful.

Summer Program Summary

The Logic and Leadership summer program is a fun, interactive and discussion based week-long course (20 hours) that teaches high school students how to be more effective leaders and plan for their futures. During the week, students learn a new framework to solving their problems. This approach replaces the complexity of technical and detailed information, with the simplicity of natural laws and logic (compiled from the world’s greatest minds: Socrates, Einstein, Bruce Lee, Nelson Mandela, Mother Teresa, and many more). To help make this program possible, Frito-Lay donated over 500 snack products.


Students pose with their snacks donated by Frito-Lay at ASU West Campus

The summer program consists of four days and one closing ceremony:

  • Day 1: Understanding Natural Laws – how to set goals and change.
  • Day 2: Common Practices of Successful People – how to form good habits.
  • Day 3: The No-Influence Model – how to improve relationships.
  • Day 4: Alignment Leadership – how to leverage the strengths of others.
  • Day 5: Closing Ceremony.

List of Programssummer

In 2017, LSA hosted 5 summer programs [143 students] at the following locations:

  1. South Mountain High School [5/26-5/31]
  2. North High School [6/5-6/9]
  3. ASU Main Campus [6/19-6/23]
  4. Westwood High School [7/10-7/14]
  5. ASU West Campus [7/17-7/21]


We measured the success of our programs by the impact on the students. They completed a satisfaction and comprehension survey before and after the program. The results are in Table 1.

Table 1: Student Satisfaction Survey Results

Performance Criteria Metrics
Number of students educated 143
Student Satisfaction rating of the program 93%
Student satisfaction rating of the instructors 98%
Parent satisfaction rating of the program 96%
Percent of students who felt the program has helped them improve 95%
Percent of students who would recommend this program to others 96%
Percent of students who felt less stressed 58%
Percent of students who felt their leadership ability improve 46%


The program participants came from very diverse backgrounds. Some students were struggling in their classes, while others were in gifted programs. Students came from all over the Phoenix Valley, and several from out of state. While each student faced unique challenges in life, the program helped empower them to overcome their challenges. Some of the success stories are as follows:

  • Student 1 spoke English as a second language and did not like talking to others. After the program, she decided to start trying to talk to more people.
  • Student 2 was frequently bullied at school. At the end of the program, she stated that she realized bullying should not have the power to affect her. She can be happy even if the people around her are not nice. She realized her own self-worth.
  • Student 3 was having behavioral issues in school. His parents wanted to send him to military school. By participating in the program, he gained the courage to speak to his parents. After attending the closing ceremony, his father realized that he was being too controlling which led his son to act out.

“This program has been life changing for [my daughter] and I’m so glad we found LSA!” –Parent

“This is the best summer program that I’ve ever been a part of.” –Student

Read what students and parents are saying HERE.


This is the second year that LSA has been able to host the high school summer program. In just one year, LSA has tripled its number of programs and greatly increased its outreach to students across the Phoenix Valley.  LSA will host 6+ local workshops, partner with 8 different high schools, and host over 6 more summer programs, over the next year.

Program Sponsors

To help make this program possible, LSA received support and donations from individuals and organizations across the Phoenix Valley. These different organizations provided monetary donations, facility support, in-kind donations, and supported LSA through various marketing efforts. The largest single donation came from PepsiCo in the form of 500 bags of Frito-Lay snacks and over 700 bottles of Gatorade. LSA graciously thanks each of the organizations below for their continued dedication to improving the education of students in Arizona.


summersummersummer  summer

A Successful After School Program

According to the Center for American Progress on the topic of “work and family life balance,” 70% of American children live in households where both parents are employed [up from 20% of mothers who worked in the 1960s] (Miller, 2016; Schabner, 2016).  American children live in a nation where 86% of males and 67% of females work more than 40 hours per week. This is more than any other developed country in the world. In a recent Pew Research Center survey, working parents identify they feel stressed, worn out, and have less quality time with their children (Miller, 2015; Education Week, 2004).

Parents are having a difficult time maintaining a stable environment for their children. Many parents look to community support (church, academic and extracurricular activities, family and friends) for assistance.

Education System’s Response

The education system is facing the burden of providing wholesome learning opportunities for children, as well as fill their time with meaningful activities that keep them out of trouble and moving forward in life (National Collaboration for Youth, 2011). According to a report conducted by Afterschool Alliance in 2009, more than half of the children left alone at home [non-participants in after school programs], are unsupervised normally between the hours of 3-6pm [prime time for juvenile crime, drug use, alcohol and sex] (Fader, 2009). This may be more prominent with students from lower social economic levels.

Unfortunately, due to diminishing budgets and an inability to attract and engage students, many after school programs are unable to provide them with the services they need (Afterschool Alliance, 2012). The real issue is that many after school programs are being launched, only to meet a requirement [prepare children for college or the workforce] or to fill up a student’s time (Fader, 2009). They do not focus on what many parents hope their children will learn by participating in education, which is to learn correct principles that teach them how to be successful in every area and stage of life.

Logic and Leadership Academy: After School Program

students-talkingA new after school program has been developed from over 23 years of industry and academic research at Arizona State University. It has the following characteristics:

  1. Teaches students how to make their life simpler by understanding natural laws and logic.
  2. Explains to students what is reality and how to explain the “whys” in life, and why it is important to become a better person in every area and stage in their life.
  3. Helps students how to find their purpose in life, by figuring out who they are.
  4. Guides students to their unique successful path, which is different then all the other students.
  5. By understanding reality, students have reduced their stress, and by knowing very little, have learned how to accomplish much.
  6. Developing a no tuition financial model to help more students participate and simplify their lives.
  7.  Includes the education of students’ parents, to support their learning experience and provide them with more resources for success.


after school program

The Logic and Leadership Academy was officially launched in 2016, and has had the following successful results:

  • Ran three after school program tests in the Phoenix Valley [North High School, Mountain Pointe High School, and Coronado High School].
  • Taught 85 students.
  • Stress levels reduced by 35%, self-confidence increased by 39%, and belief they control their lives increase by 75%.
  • North and Coronado High Schools are a title 1 schools with the majority students taught from lower socioeconomic backgrounds.
  • Mountain Pointe High School was a hub for many students from more affluent backgrounds from across the valley.
  • North HS students volunteered in the after school program, while the majority of the Mountain Pointe HS students were forced by their parents. Coronado HS students were solely football students who volunteered. In all cases, it did not matter from which background or reason the students came, each program delivered positive impact to the students.
  • Additional to the three after school programs, there has been three family conferences, where parents are run through mini workshops on the concepts taught to their children. Parents have identified that they are in full support of the ideas, and see great value in them being taught to their children.
  • Overall, parents and administrators have been satisfied with the after school programs by rating them a 9.8 and 10 out 10. Parents have identified that they have seen their children show positive improvement in their behavior and develop a new appreciation for trying to become a better person.

Impressive Cases

There are three dominant cases of parents being impressed by their children:

  • Case 1: After one week of attending the after school program, one young lady helped her friend from taking his life, by explaining to him the dominant ideas she learned in the class [there are no mistakes in life, everything happens for a reason, nothing happens by chance, we have full control over our lives, by using the expertise of others we can make our life better].
  • Case 2: At the beginning of the program week, a young man’s father provided our team insight that his son has poor behavior and was just removed from another program. At the end of the program, the son received an award for Outstanding Scholar, due to his great behavior and active participation in the course. His father was in shock at the end of the program and was thrilled that the program and its concepts were able to reach his son in a positive way.
  • Case 3: During the second week of the program, administrators notified our team that one young man being taught was so impacted by the concepts he heard, he decided to return home to live with his mother, after staying away for one month. Our team was unaware of this issue, and were pleased to hear of the results. The parent of this young man and the administrators were so grateful.

What is the Takeaway?

If you are a parent, academic institution, or investor who is struggling with finding an after school program that helps engage the youth and teaches them correct and proven principles of success that helps them understand why and how to become a better person in life, you may want to look into the Logic and Leadership Academy. Our mission is to simplify the lives of students, by helping them discover what is unique about them, and use it to their advantage and ticket to live a more happy and successful life.


Afterschool Alliance. (2012). Uncertain Times. Afterschool Program Still Struggling in Today’s Economy. Afterschool Alliance. Web (November 6, 2016). Retrieved from: http://www.afterschoolalliance.org/documents/Uncertain_Times/Uncertain-Times-2012.pdf

Education Week. (2004). After-School Programs. Education Week. Web (November 6, 2016). Retrieved from: https://www.edweek.org/ew/issues/after-school-programs/

Fader, L. (2009). U.S. After-School Programs That Make A Difference. Newsweek. Web (November 6, 2016). Retrieved from: http://www.newsweek.com/after-school-programs-make-difference-269102

Miller, G.E. (2016). The U.S. is the Most Overworked Developed Nation in the World – When do we Draw the Line. 20somethingfinance. Web (November 6, 2016). Retrieved from: https://20somethingfinance.com/american-hours-worked-productivity-vacation/

Miller, C. (2015). Stressed, Tired, Rushed: A Portrati of the Modern Family. The Upshot. Web (November 6, 2016). Retrieved from: http://www.nytimes.com/2015/11/05/upshot/stressed-tired-rushed-a-portrait-of-the-modern-family.html?_r=0

National Collaboration for Youth (2011). The Impact of Youth Development Programs On Student Academic Achievement. National Human Services Assembly. Web (November 6, 2016). Retrieved from: http://nationalassembly.org/Uploads2/Resources/SchoolSuccessBrief.pdf

Schabner, D. (2016). Americans Work More Than Anyone. ABC News. Web (November 6, 2016). Retrieved from: http://abcnews.go.com/US/story?id=93364

Schabner, D. (2016). Americans: Overworked, Overstressed. ABC News. Web (November 6, 2016). Retrieved from: http://abcnews.go.com/US/story?id=93604

How to help your child be successful


Successful Students

Education should prepare a child to be successful at life. Looking at current high school and college graduation, unemployment, economic prosperity, crime rates, and the health index, it’s clear that education has failed us. K12 education is crucial because it encompasses the formative years of a child’s development. Studies have shown that it’s difficult for someone to change ingrained habits after reaching adulthood.

Recent studies show that students are stressed, overwhelmed and under-prepared for college. 45% of college graduates have technical expertise, but lack the ability to understand people and think critically. Companies are finding that this is a significant deficiency among young employees. The majority of graduating students over think, are not accountable, think only of themselves, and want something for nothing. By observation, many high school/college graduates are not prepared for the challenges of life. For this reason, four driven college students, including Jake Gunnoe, founded the Leadership Society of Arizona (LSA). Their common belief was that they could make a difference in society.

The Fix

GhandiLSA has found a way to fix education through a disruptive technology. LSA realized that it would take a lifetime to change the current academic structure.  As a result, they created a supplementary curriculum that can teach students to be more intelligent and learn 10x quicker. Current results show that it improves social behavior, decreases stress/worry, and increases a student’s confidence. Regardless of a student’s IQ level and leadership capability, our education enables a student to add value to society.

The students identify who they are, align their life with their talents, and minimize stress and problems in their personal lives [examples of stopping the consumption of pharmaceuticals and drinking, implementing a life makeover, becoming transparent, and having an increase in accountability and responsibility]. The most common feedback from college students in the course is, “I wish I had learned this earlier.”

The Research

This disruptive model is scientifically backed by 24 years of R&D at ASU through industry testing of professional services, which has been shown to help organizations globally increase their efficiency by up to 30% and cut cost by 30-50%. The impact will be significant: decreasing criminal/delinquent behavior, bullying, substance abuse and violence, and increasing community service volunteers and efforts, and health/mental stability.

Join the Effort

With your support, we believe this technology can impact the lives of students everywhere. Subscribe to our email newsletter and keep up with this ongoing effort.

Punishment Vs. Encouragement in U.S. Education


For many, school serves as a system of filtration that challenges new and old ideologies of teaching structured by the lapse of time. Curriculums and teaching styles represents what people think is vital and necessary to the generation at hand. Today, there is an increasing differentiation between comprehension and ability among adolescents. There is not a question of what students are able to accomplish, but what teachers and administrators believe students cannot accomplish. Doubt of ability and punishment results in more harm to the student than progress. This doubt and punishment stems from a shortage of information and the enabling of non-experts within the education system.

The Difference : Punishment

What is an expert and a non-expert? How do we define the two? An expert is simply a person who has all the information and facts essential for prosperity; whereas a non-expert lacks in these fields of thought. Experts are aware of the resources and tools students required for success. Non-experts simply filter students through their classrooms. As a result, students are more often than not left behind.

Suppose a student asks the teacher a question in an attempt to further understand the lesson being taught; instead of being met with encouragement and a clear answer, the student is blamed for their inability to comprehend the subject. This educator is obviously a non-expert because they lack the knowledge of that student’s particular strengths and weaknesses. In contrast, a student who is encouraged for asking questions is more likely to comprehend the subject and thus have less fear of asking questions. This encouraging educator is aware of the student’s abilities and bases their teaching on their needs. In a classroom with encouragement, there is no such thing as right or wrong.

Solution: Encouragement

Today we see schools becoming more dependent on the filtration of students rather than the cultivation of knowledge.  When did we compromise higher education for memorization and in return, punishment? We could insinuate that this generation is lazier and less inclined to be more involved in school activities than the last; or we can choose to recognize the root of the issue is in the education system. It lies in the training of teachers and in the foundation of school environments. Teachers and educators need to recognize that today’s class of students is far more diverse than what it once was. Old ways of punishment in exchange for growth is no longer effective. With this observation in mind, positive change is possible to occur in everyday classrooms. Nevertheless, it will fail to happen if there isn’t a fundamental understanding of the ever changing student ethic.

There is a supplementary solution for this current issue. LSA offers the opportunity of intellectual expansion. It serves as a foundation for students to expand their horizons and their knowledge of themselves and the world around them. The basis of the curriculum is that there is no right or wrong answer, and the only rule is that there are no rules. LSA’s summer program provides an open space for intelligent conversation without judgment. Students are given a sense of freedom within a less structured curriculum implemented with thought provoking ideas. The teaching may seem rather unconventional at first, but it proves rather quickly to be insightful in every way imaginable. LSA presents subject matter most schools fail to represent. We encourage students to devise solutions to difficult issues. We stay away from penalizing and reprimanding students for wrong answers.


eoncouragement-2We may not be able to reconstruct the entire foundation of the educational system within the U.S. at this time, but we can begin with implementing new courses of action such as the curriculum that LSA offers. The pursuit of knowledge as well as the malleability of intelligence in adolescents is entirely rooted in teaching. Educators must become more proactive and resilient in their mission to educate the masses. It may seem impossible or outlandish to set such a goal.

However, an organization like LSA exists for something greater than themselves. They exist out of passion for students who need encouragement and strive for excellence in an otherwise subdued environment.  Change and progress are vital in the classroom. As we know teaching is based on time and what is necessary for this generation. In many ways our observations have failed us, or we have not gathered the correct information to induce change. The catalyst for recourse is already in place. To catalyze these events, we must identify the most crucial factor to set this course of change in motion. It commences with encouragement.

Quality Leadership Program for Disadvantaged Schools

We’ve all heard the phrase about opportunity knocking; however in some areas it doesn’t come to visit as often. For students living in disadvantaged areas getting access to quality programs outside of school can be difficult. To complicate matters, programs often neglect these areas and students. This is due to their inability to afford the cost of a high school summer program.

Working Together

Leadership Society of Arizona strives to educate students from all economic backgrounds. LSA also actively seeks opportunities to work with schools in disadvantaged areas. Our goal is to bring our leadership and stress reduction education to groups of students who need it the most. In order to achieve such goals, we will work extensively with the schools we are partnered with. Our efforts would be focused on raising the funds to bring a quality high school summer program to them.

High School Summer Program

There are various methods in which this may take shape. For the North High School summer program, the school was able to fund half of the cost of the program. So, LSA worked with its extensive network connections to get tax credit donations for the other half of the funds. As you can read about in more detail in our other articles, the North program was a huge success.

Another method to reach these students is to utilize some of the government funding available for these schools. Some schools and groups we are currently working with have been able to bring in LSA under federal funding. We describe both the Title I and Title VII programs in the section below. We encourage any institution  wanting to bring our leadership high school summer program to their students to look into the grants and funding available to them through the Department of Education.

Department Funding

Title I provides “financial assistance to local educational agencies (LEAs) and schools with high numbers or high percentages of children from low-income families to help ensure that all children meet challenging state academic standards.”

disadvanted-childrenTitle VII supports “the efforts of local educational agencies, Indian tribes and organizations, postsecondary institutions, and other entities to meet the unique educational and culturally related academic needs of American Indian and Alaska Native students, so that such students can meet the same challenging State student academic achievement standards as all other students are expected to meet.”

Making a Difference

But merely hosting the high school summer program in these areas is not enough to really reach the students. Along with teaching the students that they control their lives and happiness, the LSA team structures the classes to give the students as much individualized attention as possible.

To do so, we bring in a team of teaching assistants along with the instructors to go around the class and get to know the students one-to-one and understand the struggles that those students are going through. Having the one to one attention in a Socratic learning environment structured around the student rather than the material allows the students to relax and engage with the information and its application to all aspects of their lives.

LSA will continue to support education across all socioeconomic and cultural boundaries by working with education and industry partners to provide the same high quality logic and leadership education to the future leaders of those communities.

K12 Education & Society


K12 Education is supposed to prepare a child to be successful at life. Looking at current college graduation, unemployment, economic prosperity, crime and health statistics, education has failed us.


K12 Education Impact

K12 education is important because it occurs in a child’s development phase. Once the child grows, studies have shown people do not change much. It is 10x more difficult to change the habits of an adult than a child.

Many people try to improve society through finding more resources, developing new technology, changing laws, etc. All of these things can improve society, but how much can you improve people who are not intelligent. What is the definition of intelligent: Someone who is stable, understands people, knows themselves, can use logic and common sense, and is responsible.

The key to really impacting society is to ensure the child is taught to be intelligent when they are young. Give a group of non-intelligent people all the resources and technology in the world and they will still have issues. Create a group of intelligent people and they will be successful no matter what they have.

The issue is that education has failed us. The majority of students  over think issues, are not accountable, think only of themselves, want something for nothing, and have core competencies like math and English, but do not know how to use them. This is the cause of our problems in today’s society.

Supplementary Education Curriculum


We have found a way to fix education. Because we realize it will take forever to change the current academic structure, we have created a supplementary education curriculum that can teach students to be more intelligent.

Yes, we employ the latest teaching methods, minimize lecturing students, and use all forms of media to help the students engage.

However, the unique part of our solution is that it changes the focus of education from teaching students technical skills and core competencies to teaching them how to learn. We have found if a child learns how to change and improve themselves in any area when they are young, it enables them to become a person that always improve themselves throughout their life. This is what we call intelligent.

What are the results?

  1. Students learn 10x quicker
  2. Increases the teaching capability of educators.
  3. Improves social behavior
  4. Decreases stress and worry of students.
  5. Increases a student’s awareness of who they are and what they will be successful at.
  6. Regardless of IQ level and leadership capability, enables students to add value to society.

The impact of creating intelligent students on society have been:

  1. Decrease criminal and delinquent behavior
  2. Decrease teen pregnancies, bullying, substance abuse, and domestic violence.
  3. Increase community service volunteers and efforts.
  4. Increase health and mental stability.

What do we need from you?


Due to the disruptive nature of our education the curriculum does not fall under a category where it can be funded by academic units. The government does not fund education to make people intelligent, it only funds education to teach technical skills, competencies, and trades.

This makes it almost impossible to setup supplemental programs to teach students the curriculum and most importantly does not support current teachers to learn the curriculum and teach it in their classes.

We are looking for funding to pilot the curriculum at a Title 1 school in Phoenix that has bought into the idea of teaching children to be intelligent. The funding will be used as follows:

  1. Setup the supplementary education curriculum at the Title 1 school.
  2. Run the education curriculum for the school for 1 year with educators already trained on the curriculum.
  3. Train a teacher to teach the curriculum.
  4. Measure the performance of the system.
  5. Create a teacher education program for the school.

If you would like to support the effort or help fund students to take this program, please contact us at jake.g@old.leadaz.org or go click on this link: http://old.leadaz.org/logic-and-leadership-academy/give-back/ .

Improving Learning by Shifting the Focus of Education


“Maybe it’s time that we shift our focus from trying to teach students to be successful at school and instead focus on teaching students to be successful at life.”


The Issue: High School Student Success

Student life encompasses more than homework, quizzes, and tests. It is friendships, relationships, extracurricular clubs, athletics, and everything in between. Studies have been identifying many factors that affect a student’s academic performance for years. The most important factors might not even be a student’s IQ, teachers, or school environment. In fact, a child’s ability to deal with family, social, and personal issues might have more of an impact on their academic performance. Every year, over 1.2 million students drop out of high school. In college, statistics reveal that 4 year graduation rate is less than 50%.

Despite all of the resources being used to try and improve student academic performance, the U.S. K-12 education system is ranked only 17th in the world. Finland’s educational system  is ranked 1st in the world. It focuses on more free time for students and a decreased emphasis on grades. Students are encouraged to learn more about themselves and their capabilities, rather than learning technical skills. They spend less time in school, do less homework, but they seem to learn more and place higher in world academic tests than U.S. students.

The Proposal

We have known for a long time now that the education system is not working for our students. It might be because we have been focusing on the wrong factors. For the last 20 years government initiatives have continued to try to improve student learning through more difficult and technical curriculum (recently the common core and STEM initiatives). Maybe it’s time that we shift our focus from trying to teach students to be successful at school and instead focus on teaching students to be successful at life.

The Experiment

This summer, masters and PhD researchers from the Leadership Society of Arizona (LSA) at Arizona State University created a curriculum that focused on helping students simplify life. The curriculum helps students to understand more about who they are, relationships, people, and other factors that determine success, etc. The curriculum is based off of a proven leadership/management approach that has been tested in business for the last 25 years. The Leadership approach has been implemented in 1900+ tests in 33 states and 9 countries, on more than $6B of services. The goal of the high school summer program was to identify if teaching students about how to be successful at life and helping them with their personal issues, can that help the students improve their behavior, enjoy life more, and increase their ability to learn.

The Results

High School Student Success

Instructor with Students

The high school summer program results were incredible. After a week of getting to know the students and collecting data, the researchers identified some powerful trends. 71% of the students reported that they feel less stressed, and 60% said they feel both happier and more accountable. The students rated the course  a 9.8/10 rating. 95% of the students’ parents identified behavioral changes in the students with just one week of education. All the students felt that they could perform better academically with due to the education. Some of the students identified the following from the high school summer program:

Now I know that things happen for a reason, my family is unique, and all the struggles have helped me become who I am.” – Noemi Valdez (age 15)

“I learned that success is not an accident.” – Victor Solis (age 15)

“[The program] wasn’t just about ASU; it was about me, about the people around me, about the future.” – Diana Perez (age 17)

“[The program] was so enjoyable. I wish all school was like this” – Morgan Percy-Fine (age 15)

Overall this course has helped me know who I am..” – Christopher Kim (age 14)

“[The program] was helpful. I went in as a punishment, but I am glad I came.” Matt Blasé (age 16)



It seems that society has forgotten what the goal of education is. Education should prepare a child to be successful at life. It should enable a child to survive in the world and add value to society. Due to the business side of education, we have placed more value on math, science, and language, instead of people. The goal is now to teach students how to place highly on standardized test, get good grades, obtain scholarships, and write college application letters.  The goal should be focused on teaching students to add value to society, to have successful relationships, and to live a happy life. It is time we refocus and remember education is learning about reality and how to live, not grades.

For more information: sign up for the conference in October and visit our website for more information on the high school summer program.

State of Arizona High School Education

A high school student drops out of school every 26 seconds in the United States. High school dropouts are 15-17% more likely to be from Arizona. Studies show 3 out of every 4 drop out students will go on to commit a crime. They will earn 100% to 150% less than their counterparts with a high school diploma will. Being a high-school dropout makes students ineligible for 90% of available jobs. This is one of the major issues the U.S. is trying to overcome, it currently ranks 22nd out of 27 in high school graduation rates. This is the state of high school education.

Research found that the top reason for students dropping out of high school is due to a lack of motivation to perform (80%). Most students are not leaving the classroom because they are in financial need or because they know they will be the next Bill Gates. Students simply do not see value in the high school education they are receiving. This causes students to act out, cause disruptions and show bad behavior in class.

Interesting Solutions

sugata-mitraWith everyone from teachers to security guards trying to find a solution to these disruptions as well as improve the retention rates, two visionaries seem to have found the answer:

  1. sugata-mitraSugata Mitra: a world-renowned professor of education technology at Newcastle University, created a non-traditional school that empowers students to work together via the cloud to solve problems, using adults only for encouragement instead of providing instruction. He identified the two major causes for students to lose motivation are the use of punishment or examinations. This leads to the brain feeling threatened and shutting down the prefrontal cortex, which is the part of the brain responsible for learning. Mitra identified the traditional process of overwhelming students with information that makes them think and asking them to perform is outdated and not optimal.
  2. Ricardo Semler: a CEO in Brazil also identified that the traditional education approach of considering all the students equal, who are all required to meet the same minimum standards based on age and grade, produces poor performance and creates unmotivated students. Instead, Ricardo Semler found it better to create a structure that accepts students for who they are and keeps them motivated.

Both Mitra and Semler’s programs have become tremendously successful, helping students become more motivated and improve their learning.  LSA, too, has implemented leadership development programs and leadership academies seeking to help underperforming and at-risk students develop leadership traits, styles and skills. Through the creation of university high school summer programs and college programs for high school students, LSA students have seen the same results as Semler and Mitra.


Leadership Academy Results in Hawaii


 Students Educated 20
 Course Rating 9.7 / 10
 Average Decrease in Stress Levels 40%

Leadership Academy Results with At-risk Students


 Students Educated 69
 Course Rating 9.6 / 10
 Average Decrease in Stress Levels 35%
 Average Increase in Personal Happiness 19%
 Average Increase in Self-Confidence 39%
 Belief that “I Control my Life” 75%
 Ability to Plan for the Future 53%


High School Education

The traditional K–12 and college educational approach is encountering problems with increased student stress, low retention rates, and overall low-performing students due to lack of motivation. LSA’s Leadership Academy provides students the leadership skills necessary to lead themselves to success through the following:

  1. Simplifying complex issues.
  2. Minimizing the students need to think and memorize information.
  3. Minimizing rules and control.
  4. Using the latest scientific developments.
  5. Using natural laws and logic to help students solve complex issues instead of technical information and experience.

As a result to the difficulty level of changing the current high school education structure in the U.S., LSA has provided supplementary education to help students decrease their stress, increase their happiness, and find out how they can add value to society. Ultimately, LSA is more interested in helping students learn to be successful and happy, instead of just learning how to survive school.

The “No Rules” Classroom – Improving Accountability & Confidence

Have you ever heard of classroom where there were no rules? It sounds crazy doesn’t it? In our leadership high school summer program for high school students, this type of classroom is made a reality. At the start of the summer program, our teachers explain to the students that there are “no rules”. “No rules” means that students can say, do and act any way they want without the fear of punishment.

Most people would imagine this type of high school summer program would be chaotic and unruly but something interesting happens during the summer course. By the end of the week, even the students forced to come by their parents enjoy coming and over 60% of the students reported feeling more confident and accountable. At the end of the program, one parent said “[My son] had a phenomenal learning experience. We could see a real change in his attitude, confidence and how he conducts himself.”

How were we able to help these students become more accountable and confident? The secret: Simplifying life through natural laws and logic, enabling children to know, want and do things to make them more successful.

Educational Problem

Leadership Society of Arizona identified a fundamental issue in our current educational system, it forces students to think. The world has made major advancements in the last twenty years. This has created many technical specialties. This has increased the complexity and the amount of information a student must learn. Education tries to prepare students by teaching them all of this information, but in the process it confuses and puts tremendous pressure on the students, causing them to stress, worry, be unmotivated and develop detrimental social behaviors. By pushing the students to fill their minds with more and more information and details, the students no longer can understand the purpose of life and who they are. They lose themselves. From an initial survey at our high school summer program, we identified that 39% of students felt that they had limited to no control over their life.

The Great Minds in History

High School Summer Program

Mohandas Gandhi

We searched for solutions to this problem by looking at the greatest minds in history like Socrates, Einstein, Ghandi, etc… As we analyzed these great minds, we found a similar concept and characteristic that all of them shared. All of these great leaders instead of focusing on complex ideas and memorizing details, they focused on helping people to understand the purpose of life and use natural laws and logic.  We realized that in order to get our students to be more confident, successful and motivated, we needed to simplify life and help them develop an understanding of who they are and what their purpose in life is..

Simplifying Life

With this idea in mind, we changed the way we ran our high school summer program. We found the only way to help a person figure out what they want is to allow them freedom to do what they want. Thus, we did the following:

  1. Eliminated all rules
  2. Created a flexible curriculum where the students can choose the topics.
  3. Instructors are more focused on getting to know the students than teaching a certain amount of information. This helps the students learn about themselves.
  4. Gives students an opportunity to present.

We also found that in order to simplify life for the students and give them a framework in which they could use to explore life and make sense of their thoughts, was to teach them natural laws and logic. Natural laws are simple and they are powerful because they work everywhere and in every discipline. For example, the law of gravity, whether in physics or in sports, the law of gravity works the same and is important to understand.

High School Summer Program Results

High School Summer Program

Summer Program Instructors

After a week of students being exposed to this type of environment, they made great improvement. The results showed that students were 39% more confident, 75% more accountable (believing they have control over their own lives) and 19% happier. One student said “I like how this class made life easier and actually happier for me; teaching me how I am in control of my life.”

The parents are continually shocked by the results they see in their kids. 100% of the parents would enroll their student again. Along with that, 91% believed that the high school summer program helped their child develop leadership skills.


Our current educational system produces students that are more stressed, worried, depressed. Students from this system have a difficult time understanding life and who they are. Although this system might teach more information, it causes them to be less successful and happy. In order to remedy our current system, we focus lee on helping students learn the “what” in life. We spend more time teach the students to understand the “why”. This is necessary to make sure they understand themselves and life.

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