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Christopher Day, University of Nottingham, UK


Successful Principals in Times of Change Christopher Day, University of Nottingham, UK – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Christopher Day, University of Nottingham, UK

Christopher Day, University of Nottingham,
Successful Principals in Times of Change
  • The Standards Agenda

  • i) Shaping the Future
  • ii) Leading Learning and Teaching
  • iii) Developing Self and Working with Others
  • iv) Managing the Organisation
  • v) Securing Accountability
  • vi) Strengthening Community
  • (DfES, 2004)

  • Social Trends

ISSLP Participants
  • Australia - Bill Mulford (Tasmania) and David
    Gurr Lawrie Drysdale (Melbourne)
  • Canada (Toronto) - Kenneth Leithwood
  • Denmark (Copenhagen) - Lejf Moos
  • England (Nottingham) - Christopher Day
  • China (Hong Kong) - Kam-Cheung Wong
  • Norway (Oslo) - Jorunn Moller
  • Sweden (UMEA) - Olof Johansson
  • USA (SUNY, Buffalo) - Stephen Jacobson and Lauri

ISSLP Objectives
  • Identify the values, knowledge, skills and
    dispositions which successful school leaders use
    in implementing leadership practices across a
    range of successful schools in different
  • Identity those leadership practices that are
    uniquely important in large v. small schools,
    urban v. suburban v. rural schools, schools with
    homogeneous and diverse student populations and
    high v. low poverty schools.
  • Explore the relationship between successful
    leadership values, practices, broader social and
    school specific conditions, and student outcomes
    in different countries.

ISSLP Objectives (ctd)
  • Produce the first international database on
    successful school leadership based upon the
    largest empirical study, thus providing a unique
    contribution to knowledge.
  • Produce digital case studies, organise national
    and international dissemination conferences and
    produce and disseminate a book and several
    academic conference papers.

ISSLP Project Phases
  • Literature review and design of interview
    protocol (April 2001 - July 2002)
  • Multi-site case studies conducted, analysed,
    comparative data produced (September 2002 -
    August 2004)
  • Questionnaire survey of principals in each
    country (January 2005 - September 2005)
  • In-depth observational case studies (October 2005
    - July 2006)
  • Production of digital case studies (September
    2006 - March 2007)

ISSLP Methods
  • Interview and questionnaire based study
  • Principals complete biographical and career
  • Intervies, over 2-3 days (min), on school
    principals success with
  • Principal (3 occasions)
  • 2-3 teachers
  • 2-3 support staff
  • 2-3 parents
  • 2-3 school governors
  • 2 groups of pupils (3-4 in each group)

ISSLP Methods (ctd)
  • Interviews based on semi-structured schedules
  • Pupil population and challenges presented
  • School Ethos
  • School success and principals contribution
  • Professional relationships with government
    inspectors, LEA officers, teachers, governors,
    parents and pupils
  • And for principals only
  • Non-professional sources of support
  • Work/Life boundaries
  • Narratives of histories and critical

Selection of Schools
  • Schools of different sizes operating within
    different phases of education (i.e. the early
    years of primary schooling through to
    upper-secondary and including special schools)
  • Schools located within a range of economic and
    socio-cultural settings (i.e. including rural,
    suburban and inner-urban schools as well as those
    with mixed catchment areas)
  • Schools in which headteachers who were widely
    acknowledged as being effective leaders had
    spent different amounts of time (i.e. ranging
    from relatively new to well-established
    headteachers with many years of experience)

  • Questions

What successful leaders look like
  • Beyond transformational leadership
  • Values-led, achievement-oriented,
    people centred
  • Contingency driven managing tensions
    and dilemmas
  • Reflection
  • Training and Development

Effective Headteachers Values led
  • Were clear in their vision for the school and
    communicated it to all its constituents
  • Focused upon care and achievement simultaneously
  • Created, maintained and constantly monitored
    relationships recognising them as key to the
    cultures of learning
  • Were reflective in a variety of internal and
    external social and organisational contexts,
    using a variety of problem-solving approaches
  • Sought, synthesised, and evaluated internal and
    external data, applying these to the school
    within their values framework
  • persisted with apparently intractable issues in
    their drive for higher standards

Effective Headteachers Values led (ctd)
  • Were prepared to take risks in order to achieve
  • Were not afraid to ask difficult questions of
    themselves and others
  • Were entrepreneurial
  • Were networkers inside and outside the school
  • Were not afraid to acknowledge failure but did
    not give up and learnt from it
  • Were aware of a range of sources to help solve
  • Managed ongoing tensions and dilemmas through
    principled, values-led contingency leadership.

Origins UK
  • Seven Tensions
  • Leadership v. Management
  • Maintenance v. Development
  • Internal v. External Change
  • Autonomy v. Autocracy
  • Personal Time v. Professional Tasks
  • Personal Values v. Institutional Imperatives
  • Leadership in Small v. Large Schools
  • Three Dilemmas
  • Development v. Dismissal
  • Power with v. Power over
  • Subcontracting v. Mediation

Ten Areas For Success
  • Vision and resilience
  • Articulating and upholding values and beliefs
    the ethical dimension
  • Focussing upon moral purpose
  • Fostering an inclusive community
  • Creating expectation and achievement
  • Building internal capital and capacity
  • Leading the learning
  • Defining and maintaining identity
  • Renewing trust
  • Being passionate through commitment

Three Key Themes
  • 1. Moral purpose and social justice
  • 2. Organisational expectation and learning
  • 3. Identity, trust and passionate commitment

  • Moral purpose and social justice

  • Organisational expectation
  • and learning

  • Identity, trust and
  • passionate commitment
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