2424 Chapters
Medium 9781475811797

Integrated Leadership: How Principals and Teachers Share Transformational and Instructional Influence

Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

Susan M. Printy

Helen M. Marks

Alex J. Bowers

Integrated Leadership: How Principals and Teachers Share Transformational and Instructional Influence

ABSTRACT: Transformational leadership by the principal appears to be a precondition of shared instructional leadership in schools, but it does not guarantee that principals and teachers will collaborate on curriculum and instruction. The present study, a content analysis of existing case studies, explores the ways in which teachers respond to transformational leadership by the principal, with attention paid to the influence and conditions that activate interdependent relationships and enhance shared transformational leadership and shared instructional leadership. A contrast school, where shared instructional leadership did not take hold, suggests that structures and processes that organize teachers’ work differently do not automatically result in the kinds of interactions associated with quality teaching and learning.

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Medium 9781475811650

Horton, Highlander, and Leadership Education: Lessons for Preparing Educational Leaders for Social Justice

Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

ANDREA E. EVANS

ABSTRACT: Influenced by Myles Horton’s vision and leadership, the Highlander Folk School became an adult education program centered on social change via the labor and civil rights movements. In this article, I examine the pedagogy and practice of Myles Horton and the Highlander Folk School and identify the key themes that guided their educational approach to social justice leadership training. I then explore the ways in which educational leadership preparation may exemplify these key themes in its pedagogy and practice with the aim of moving the field and schooling closer to social justice and democratic ideals.

Recent scholarship reveals renewed interest in and focus on educational leadership oriented toward social justice and democracy (Brown, 2004, 2006; Cambron-McCabe & McCarthy, 2005; Larson & Murtadha, 2002; Marshall, 2004; Marshall & Oliva, 2006; Shields, 2004). Generally, this scholarship supports the notion that educational leaders have a social and moral obligation to foster equitable school practices, processes, and outcomes for learners of different racial, socioeconomic, gender, cultural, disability, and sexual orientation backgrounds. Specifically, Bredeson (2004) calls for democratic school leaders who act intentionally to create equitable schooling and who serve as “dismantlers who need to challenge inequities and disrupt the sources and systems that contribute to those injustices” (p. 712). These scholars argue that school leaders’ moral and social responsibility must manifest itself in the exercise of professional agency and become evident in actions, behaviors, and decisions that result in equitable schooling for children. Positioned as such, school leaders are in fact “cultural workers” (Giroux, 1992, p. 13) who, Dantley (1990) contends, “must be wedded to the notion of schools as vehicles for social and political reconstruction” (p. 594).

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Medium 9781475819397

Priorities That Should Guide Teacher Education in a Democracy

Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

ELIZABETH MEADOWS

My background as a teacher educator and parent informs the five major priorities that, in my view, should guide teacher education in preparing teachers for their work in a democratic society. I am a teacher educator in a university born from and sustained by students’ and faculty members’ motives to use education as a transformative force to realize life dreams and help enact social justice.

My work involves teaching preservice elementary teachers courses in methods, foundations, and field experiences that are situated both in the university and in schools. I have taught in public schools as a classroom teacher and as a partner to urban public school teachers in implementing robust mathematics curricula and discussion practices that promote democratic practices and students’ critical thinking skills. My daughter, who attends middle school, regularly informs me about her school experiences and opinions about her teachers. My husband and I purposely chose to raise our daughter in a diverse community with a school district renowned for its commitment to valuing this diversity and teaching all students well.

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Medium 9781475836745

Talking About Race: Overcoming Fear in the Process of Change

Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

EMILY LILJA PALMER

KAREN SEASHORE LOUIS

Talking about Race

Overcoming Fear in the Process of Change

ABSTRACT: Purpose: We investigated the way in which structured, multiyear conversations about race and institutional racism occurred in suburban secondary schools with changing racial demographics. Research Framework: The study draws on interpretive research traditions, in that we assume that how teachers understand race and racism will influence how they work with colleagues and students. As such, the research examines to what extent talking about race and learning about institutional racism affects educators’ mental models and their classroom practices. Method: Secondary schools in three districts that had participated in ongoing professional development related to racial equity were selected. Grounded theory methods were used for data collection, coding, and analysis of interviews with teachers and administrators. Findings: This study revealed that principal leadership affected teachers’ engagement in this work. When this occurred, teachers made meaningful changes in classroom practices and their school communities. The primary findings of the study are: (1) fear of being considered racist was a barrier for White teachers and administrators that impeded collective focus on racial achievement gaps; (2) principals’ deep personal engagement over a period of several years encouraged a process of confronting and mitigating this fear, and helped teachers engage with the implications of race for school and classroom practices. Significance: Discomfort, a critical element in confronting racial inequities in schools, requires school leaders, particularly principals, to authentically participate and engage in order to foster teacher change.

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Medium 9781442244368

On the Relationship Between Sanctity and Knowledge: Holiness as an Epistemological Criterion in St. Thomas

Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

On the Relationship Between Sanctity and Knowledge: Holiness as an Epistemological Criterion in St. Thomas

Jessica Murdoch

I. Introduction

St. Thomas and the Thomistic tradition that follows him distinguish between natural theology and supernatural, or revealed, theology, a distinction that corresponds to the one that obtains between nature and grace. Natural theology forms both the end and apex of metaphysics, the science of the “wise man”—that is, the science of certain knowledge via knowledge of the causes.1 Thomistic metaphysics is commonly understood to be divided into two parts: general metaphysics and special metaphysics, which includes natural theology. The former considers the meaning of being qua being; the latter takes up the ens Supremum, the highest being or the causa sui, the cause of all being, that is, God. Though metaphysics with its inner moment of natural theology is the science of the wise man, wisdom itself pertains primarily to revealed theology. Sacra doctrina, Thomas notes, is “wisdom above all human wisdom; not merely in any one order, but absolutely,” precisely because it is the highest cause and because it is the knowledge of divine things.2 There is a natural order of knowledge that corresponds to human wisdom and a supernatural order of knowledge that corresponds to revealed truth, which is embodied in the person of Christ, the Wisdom of God.

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