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Leadership and Learning: Paradox, Paradigms and Principles


John MacBeath and Tony Townsend

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Introduction
Leadership and learning are words so familiar to us that they have become what the French term faux amis, false friends, leading us down false trails and into conceptual cul-de-sacs. Learning is what happens in schools and leadership is something that many aspire to but only a few larger than life individuals ever achieve. So saturated are these terms with common understanding, how can we see them anew, as it were for the first time? To compound matters the phrase Leadership for Learning has entered the vocabulary. Its ambiguity is to be found in the simple, yet highly complex conjunction which unites both big ideas. It merits some careful deconstruction, a task which, as editors, we have created for ourselves. In bringing together scholarly contributions from around the world, our aim was less to arrive at a common definition than to exemplify how understandings are shaped and reshaped within various cultural contexts and discursive practices. How do powerful ideas travel, and as they travel how do they acquire new identities and new forms of expression? Lejf Moos uses the term cultural isomorphs to refer to concepts that are deceptively similar but essentially different, that look alike but are actually structured of quite different elements. So, countries such as Denmark find themselves not only adopting the language but also its underlying constructs, often erecting a barrier to an understanding of the essential differences that lie beneath the words. As English is the language of scholarly debate it can easily overshadow linguistic nuances in how the term is being defined, discussed and understood (Proitz 2010: 135). In Norwegian, the term laeringsutbytte stands in for learning outcomes but carries

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J. MacBeath (*) Faculty of Education, University of Cambridge, Hills Road 184, CB2 8PQ Cambridge, UK e-mail: jecm2@cam.ac.uk T. Townsend School of Education, University of Glasgow, Eldon Street 11, G3 6NH Glasgow, UK e-mail: tony.townsend@glasgow.ac.uk T. Townsend and J. MacBeath (eds.), International Handbook of Leadership for Learning, Springer International Handbooks of Education 25, DOI 10.1007/978-94-007-1350-5_1, Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2011 1

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quite different connotations for a Norwegian speaker. In Italian, French or Spanish, different nuances of meaning require sensitive interpretation. Even the sharing of a common language, however, does not vouchsafe common understanding. Bernard Shaw is attributed with the statement that the USA and Britain are divided by a common language, and while the original source is disputed, it nonetheless highlights the danger of assuming that words carry the same meaning to different audiences. A dramatic illustration of this is contained in the river deep website on language
Imagine an American investor speaking to a British CEO: I think we can manage a $1.5 billion investment in your company. The British CEO is going to be very surprised when the check (sic) has three fewer zeroes than expected! (http://web.riverdeep.net/current/ 2001/03/032001_language.jhtml)

Drawing as it does on policy and practice across the world, the reader of this book will be frequently stopped short by language which may be all too familiar and yet troublesome in its use or connotation. Jacobson and Johnson (in Chap. 31) offer a health warning to the reader, writing that cross-national comparisons remind us that theory and praxis in educational leadership and management are socially constructed and contextually bound. They add, Our analyses of differences across national contexts underscore the role of varying ideological orientations and policy contexts in the day-to-day practice of successful school principals. Ideological orientations are nowhere more apparent than in relation to leadership. Leadership is one of those big ideas that has travelled across continents, its meaning in differing cultures deceptively similar but essentially different. The subtlety of these distinctions may, as Daniel Muijs points out (Chap. 9), escape policy makers who display an unfortunate impatience to move straight to prescription, potentially at its most harmful where the research base is from an entirely different (cultural) context, where school leadership will operate under different circumstances and conditions. What assumptions are brought to what is seen and the way in which it is judged? Czarniawska (1997) coins the term outsidedness to infuse what is seen with a critical, and distancing, eye. It aims at understanding not by identification (they are like us) but by the recognition of differences (p. 62). Interculturality is a term used to refer to the capacity to experience and analyse cultural otherness, and to use this experience to reflect on matters that are usually taken for granted within ones own culture and environment (Council of Europe 2009: 10). It requires, a readiness to decentre our perspectives and enter into a dialogue with others and their perceptions, and a true desire to negotiate our understandings (Brotto in Chap. 63). Building on and extending Hofstedes work in cultural dimensions (see for example Hofstede 1991), the GLOBE study encompassing 62 countries (House et al. 2004) identified aspects of leadership which not only appeared to be universal but also had significantly different orientations in the Middle East, Asia, Latin Europe and Germanic Europe, for example.
The study of culture and leadership underscores the complexity of the leadership process and how it is influenced by culture. Data from the GLOBE study highlight the need for

1 Leadership and Learning: Paradox, Paradigms and Principles each of us to expand out ethnocentric tendencies to view leadership from only our own perspective and to open our window to the diverse ways in which leadership is viewed by people from different regions around the world. (Northouse 2007: 32)

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The term leadership and the baggage it carries within it has often to fit uncomfortably into the educational lexicon in countries where the word has no equivalent and its meaning is hard to grasp. In Germany and Austria, recent history suggests that the leader (der Fuhrer) is a notion that has had to be treated with caution. In Nordic countries, it smacks of something alien to a democratic society. The antipathy to individual leadership is deeply embedded in Nordic history and folklore, as an apocryphal tale of a French invasion of Denmark has it, in which the following dialogue took place:
Where is your leader? We are from Denmark. We have no leader. We are all leaders.

The Leadership Discourse


When did leadership enter the educational vocabulary and successfully invade even the Nordic countries? It may be said that educational literature, and in its wake educational policy, came late to apply to schooling. Although there was literature on educational leadership in the 1970s and 1980s it was not until the 1990s that the interest in leadership really began to gather momentum. Chairs and centres were established in universities, new journals were created or renamed, development programmes were introduced and government departments began to pick up on the emerging trend. In England this watershed was marked by the opening in 2002 of the purpose built National College for School Leadership, growing to become a multimillion pound enterprise. The renaming of journals and management centres tells its own story. Management no longer captured the Zeitgeist, the movement of ideas away from managing a school with all the connotations that evokes to leading a school a visionary, forward looking and inspirational venture. The qualities of leadership have proved harder to pin down than the less elusive functions of management, but have, nonetheless, proved a rich and growing seam of literature. As profiles, trait theories, categories of competencies (and competences) have proliferated so has an accompanying critique. Zaccaro (2001), for example, has argued that to focus on a small set of individual attributes neglects cognitive abilities, motives, values, social skills and implicit expertise. Further, it is argued, such a focus fails to consider patterns or integrations of multiple attributes, behavioural diversity and does not distinguish between attributes that are generally not malleable over time and those that are shaped by situational factors, unpredictability and the dynamics of a changing society. In comparison with the attempt to define successful leadership, little work has been carried out on ineffective leaders except as the counterpoint to what is judged

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to be effective. One such comparison in the USA (Krug et al. 1990) found little difference between the activities of effective and ineffective principals but concluded that the meanings they attributed to their activities were significantly different. They concluded that the way a principal interprets a particular activity (beliefs) [is] of primary importance in explaining differences between effective and less effective principals (p. 2). While this is a finding that may not receive wide support, particularly from a behaviourist perspective, there is also evidence to support the half full or half empty glass theory the difference between problems and challenges, as Bolman and Deals (1991) seminal studies on framing and reframing demonstrate. Whether it is a question of values, behaviours or competences these do not necessarily travel well. For example, while Stogdill (1948) and Mann (1959) found that although some traits were common across a number of studies, there was strong enough evidence to suggest that leaders in one situation may not necessarily be effective leaders in other situations. In similar vein contingency theorists such as Bossert and his colleagues (1982) have argued that no single style of management is necessarily appropriate for all schools, concluding that principals must find the style and structures most suited to their own local situation certain principal behaviours have different effects in different organizational settings. Such findings confirm the contingency approach to organizational effectiveness found in current leadership theories (Bossert et al. 1982: 38). Stogdill was later to moderate his earlier stance to lay greater emphasis on the interplay of competences and situational factors. Common to this stream of literature, however, is the concerted focus on the big leader. As David Frost has argued (Chap. 48 in this volume) The language chosen in particular the constant use of the word leader is inhibiting and reinforces the assumption that it is about special people with particular role designations and authority bestowed by officialdom. The constant assumption of leadership as exercised at the apex of the organisational pyramid (Murphy 2000) is exemplified in McKinseys War for Talent (Michaels et al. 2001) the aggressive competition for an apparently limited individual commodity talent. While the Mckinsey assumptions of the talent pool have been challenged (see for example, Gladwell 2002), the interest in individual leadership has continued apace, together with a profileration of adjectives to denote specific qualities that delineate it. Stogdills large-scale study found that there were as many definitions as there are people who have attempted to define it (1974: 259). Many of these variations on a theme originate in corporate literature and have found their way into the educational discourse, typically with a focus on the highly successful, larger than life, business leaders who have turned their companies around (e.g. Collins 2001). If not a model which transfers directly into school practice, it has tended to reinforce the focus on the headteacher, the heroic rescuer of failing schools.
Narratives of the big leaders on the world stage, while less directly influential on educational practice, have provided a backdrop to how the qualities of individual leadership come to be focused on the headteacher or those in positions of conspicuous power (Waterhouse et al. 2008: 2)

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The myriad forms of adjectival leadership that have crossed corporate and educational boundaries include visionary (Nanus 1978), passionate (Davies and Brighouse 2008), adaptive (Heifetz 1994), invitational (Purkey and Siegel 2002), servant (Greenleaf 1997), transactional and transformational (Burns 1978). However, unique to education is the variant on a theme which has had the greatest impact and surfaces repeatedly in this volume instructional leadership. It is a term that enjoys a large degree of conceptual elasticity. Its apparent focus on instruction does not immediately bring to mind the learner or the learning process, which is why the terminology of leadership for learning has provided the title for this handbook. So our story starts with a focus on learning.

A Focus on Learning
In the beginning was learning. It is the first principle of leadership for learning and its compass includes what we know about where learning starts, and sometimes ends. The demonisation of child-centredness during the ReaganThatcher regime is a curious anomaly since learning is by definition, and has always been, childcentred. What else could it be? We are the architects of our own intelligence, writes Perkins (1995), a task we undertake all by ourselves months before conception, helped or hindered by what passes through the umbilical chord and the level of comfort or discomfort, stimulation or inhibition that the uterine environment affords. This is where nature and nurture first meet. From the first days and weeks after birth, in this new bewildering environment, we pursue what Csikzentimahlyi (1990) terms flow experiences, the psychological high that comes from the meeting point of challenge and skill. Learning by discovery is what, as human beings, we do, our innate latitude for adventure only constrained by protective parents or undermined by neglectful adults. Even after childhood is left behind we continue to seek out cognitive challenges, through Sudoku, crosswords, jigsaw puzzles, chess and bridge problems, pub quizzes and video games because the progress from cognitive dissonance to cognitive resolution is intrinsically rewarding (Egan 1997). In the early years before education is delivered, discovery and new intellectual challenges are their own reward. It is only as we institutionalise and ration learning that it requires sanctions, compensations and extrinsic incentives such as gold stars and marks out of ten. The spontaneous multi-faceted learning that occurs in informal contexts contrasts with so much of what takes place in classrooms sequential, cerebral and pre-determined. Objectives, targets and levels of attainment tell us that the teacher is unlikely to be surprised into deviation or ambushed by childrens spontaneous off-task insights. The question this disjuncture poses is to what extent are schools capable of taking forward and enriching that informal learning, or, in some cases,

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attempting to repair the ruins of an intellectually and emotionally impoverished childhood? At what point and in what way do children begin to engage with school? And at what point do they begin to disengage? Schlechty (2002) posited a fivefold range of responses to school from engagement, through strategic compliance and ritual compliance, to retreatism and rebellion. These responses are not simply to be laid at the door of the individual pupil, however. It is not just an individual or personal experience, writes Patrick Lewis (2007) rather it enmeshed with family, community, the greater society (p. 49) and inescapably with the twin deities of curriculum and assessment. Curriculum can all too easily become that sequenced ruthlessly cumulative (Pinker 2003) series of tasks to be overtaken, while its handmaiden assessment is seen as recalling and reproducing what you have been taught, not a reflection of what you have been enthralled by, what you have learned about yourself, or learned about your learning. Yet, as adults, when we look back on school is it not the peak moments of enjoyment, discovery and flow that we recall? Those memorable events are often experienced anew with the emotional texture that gave rise to them. And we recall those teachers who weaved their magic, made us laugh and sometimes made us cry with empathy in their story telling. In Scotland in the 1970s before the age of performativity and accountability, many primary schools used an approach called Storyline. Although it preceded neuroscientific findings of the brains predilection for the narrative form, it construed learning as a narrative quest for deeper meaning. Learning was story telling but the stories to be told and shared came from the pupils; the setting for the imaginative creations carefully scaffolded by their teachers. Its thematic approach owed much to progressivism, before that became a dirty word, engaging children in making connections between the external knowledge world and the inner world of their creative imagination. The classroom, indeed the whole of a school, might become an Amazon rain forest, a Victorian village, an island community or an urban street. Jerry Starrats view of school as place in which children and young people engage in a personal quest for their identity as learners and as human beings is a reminder of an idyll that existed once and is still recognisable in some communities and in some parts of the world.
As human beings they [children] are searching, and must search for the truth of who they are. Educators miss this connection because they are accustomed to view the learning agenda of the school as an end in itself, rather than as a means for the moral and intellectual filling out of learners as human beings. Schools assume that their learning agenda stands above and outside of the personal and civic life of learners. By and large the message communicated to learners is: leave your personal and civic lives at the schoolhouse door certainly at the classroom door. (Starratt 2005: 3)

This touches on the second of five principles in the wedding cake model. School provides (or can provide) the milieu in which children learn about themselves, about others at first hand.

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Conditions for Learning


The proposition that milieu is critical and may weigh more heavily in lifelong learning than attainment outcomes is endorsed by Hartman Von Hentigs series of letters to a mythical nephew Tobias in response to the question Why should I have to go to school? in one letter he writes:
In school you meet people different from yourself from different backgrounds, children you can observe, talk to, ask questions, for example someone from Turkey or Vietnam, a devout Catholic or an out and out atheist, boys and girls, a mathematical whiz kid, a child in a wheelchair I believe wholeheartedly that the open school is there first and foremost to bring young people together and to help them to learn to live in a way that our political society so badly needs (Von Hentig 2001: 47)

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This collegial medium (and essential purpose) is cited by Andersen (2010: 15) as one the characteristics of Finnish classrooms. The Finnish school system pays more attention to the class, a community of pupils; pupils must function together and take account of each other. The significance of this should not be underestimated as research has consistently shown that the social mix (Thrupp 1999) may be the most powerful of determinants of attitudes and achievement. In school effectiveness studies it has been described as the compositional effect (Mortimore 1998), put simply as who you go to school with (MacBeath et al. 2006). As schools increasingly become multi-cultural, the milieu in which you learn assumes greater salience, the medium is the message. Conditions for learning cover a broad field, write Black and Wiliam (2009) bringing together personal epistemology, task and environment. Personal epistemology includes all cognitive functions, past experience recalled, beliefs, dispositions, motivation and knowledge of the domain, of the current task and of relevant tactics and strategies (p. 15). Task conditions include resources available to the learner, constraints inherent in a task, time and instructional cues, in interaction with constraints in the school environment and local context. The title of Peter Senges book Schools that Learn (Senge et al. 2003) shifts the focus of our attention from the pupil as learner to the school as learner. The knowledge that is acquired and transmitted is embedded in the structures and cultures of the school, growing virtually on a daily basis, so it may be said, one never steps into the same school twice. The primary task of leadership is, therefore, to breathe life, excitement and enthusiasm into the learning environment for students and for teachers (Sackney and Mitchell 2008). This implies, of course, that leaders are comfortable with ambiguity, that they are more interested in learning than in outcomes, and that they trust teachers and students to work their magic in the classrooms (p. 126). Ambiguity, trust and magic defy easy measurement and struggle to find a place in the arithmetic of tightly prescribed student outcomes. In England, where the narrowed definition of outcomes has lessened ambiguity and diminished trust, it was the loss of magic moments in the classroom that was one of the primary

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reasons given by teachers for leaving the profession they loved (Galton and MacBeath 2008).
Its the spontaneity thats gone. I mean if it had snowed we used to run to the window and wed stop and do some creative poetry. Thats gone now because everything is very much structured now, very planned and thats a shame. I felt my confidence suddenly going. I felt deskilled as if everything we had been doing all these years, in a way it was almost like the government saying, You havent been doing it well enough. This is how it should be done now. This is what were prescribing. This is what we want you to deliver. My mums a teacher and when I said I want to be one she said Jesus are you alright?

In such circumstances is there a failure of leadership in supplying the oxygen for professional learning, which in turn breathes life into classroom learning? Keeping learning at the very centre of everything in the face of myriad other pressures and everyday busyness requires the ability, in David Hargreaves words to fly below the radar (in Bangs et al. 2010: 149). It requires both the will and skill to pursue what is valued rather than simply what is measured.

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Dialogue
Dialogue, the third of the five principles is, in the words of the New Zealand Government Office, what maintains the flow of the learning conversation. Dia logos in the Greek denotes meaning flowing through it. Dialogue is a very particular form of conversation involving the exchange of ideas and the search for shared meaning and common understanding. It is quite different in form and purpose from casual chat or combative debate. It is, according to Watkins, a quality of talk closely associated with rich learning, development of understanding and building of community knowledge (Watkins 2004: 120). Dialogue enables us to take learning forward, to reach understandings which would not be possible in the sequestered environment of the individual classroom. It is grounded in honesty and trust which do not simply arise spontaneously but take time to nurture and embed within the school culture. Alexander (2004) who characterised pedagogy as collective, reciprocal, supportive, cumulative and purposeful, applies the same principle to professional learning. He goes on to pose a series of questions about how professionals talk together: Do they listen to each other without interruption? Do they respect each others viewpoint or do they pontificate, presuming that wisdom comes only with status? Do they accept the discipline of collective problem-solving or prefer to pursue private agendas? Do they stick to the topic in hand or do they digress? Yet do they feel able to speculate without fear that their contribution will be sidelined as theoretical or irrelevant?

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In respect of ideas which they have been offered do they ask probing questions, or do they merely hear them and pass them on? In respect of what is novel or unfamiliar are they prepared willingly to suspend disbelief? Do discussions take thinking forward or do they go round in circles? Do the participants have the skills which all this requires? (Alexander 2004: 39) Dialogue does not occur serendipitously but is a consequence or outcome of leadership for learning. Teacher talk, particularly in the sanctuary of the staff room/ teacher lounge, can be, in Deal and Petersons (1990) descriptor toxic. Positive, learning-centred talk is engaged through the use of tools and strategies vignettes and stories of practice, identification and reframing of dilemmas and challenges, lesson study, and by the judicious choice and use of critical friends. Critical friends help school colleagues become aware of, value and reflect on practice that has perhaps been taken for granted. They can help to make connections between school colleagues by picking up on common points of interest and triggering conversations that could develop into sustained dialogue. Learning, as Cousins (1996) puts it, flows from organisational sensemaking. It is a collective capacity, to learn about ourselves and to live with the inconsistencies, the contradictions, the cognitive dissonances that precede and characterise learning. The valuing of consistency leads to competency; the valuing of inconsistency leads to learning (Arygris and Schn 1978). As Sue Swaffield writes in this volume (Chap. 57), the development of dialogue often benefits from the external eye, the insight and challenge that comes from a critical friend, with expertise to encourage openness and a willingness to reframe, in the quest for deeper understanding.

Shared Leadership
Leadership may, like learning, be understood not simply as the province of those in formally defined roles but as opportunistic, emergent and collective. Yet it is so often cast as the province of individuals that it can be difficult to perceive what sharing of leadership means. It is most likely to be seen as delegation, giving decision-making authority to others, perhaps even relinquishing some authority and power. Yet, it is still focused on the individual through whom leadership is granted. By contrast, opportunistic leadership occurs within cultures which encourage leadership to be taken rather than simply given, an expression of agency, an underpinning precept of the wedding cake model described above. The concept of leaderful practice, leaderful communities (Raelin 2003) and leadership density (Sergiovanni 1992) points to the same principle that all members of a school have something to contribute. Sergiovanni, for example, argues that a successful school is one in which the maximum degree of leadership is exercised by the maximum number of people including teachers, pupils, parents and support

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staff. Density is tested when many people are involved in influencing the work of others, decision making and generating new ideas (Sergiovanni 2001). These issues are explored further in David Frosts chapter which extends the discussion to teacher leadership and student leadership. The sharing of leadership is a challenging prospect for schools in which practice is atomised, where there is little sense of a collective culture and there is lack of a capacity for change. As Elmore has argued:
The default culture in most schools is one in which practice is atomized, school organisation reinforces the atomization by minimizing occasions for collective work on common problems, so the school lacks the basic organisational capacity to use any kind of external knowledge or skill to improve practice. (Elmore 2005: 47)

There is, nonetheless, persuasive evidence to suggest (Lieberman and Friedrich 2007; Brotto and Barzano 2009) that teachers not only improve their practice when they talk to other teachers but that the dialogic process also raises to the surface the incipient leadership qualities that have lain dormant awakening the sleeping giant (Katzenmeyer and Moller 2001). This may occur in the routine flow of school life, through collaborative lesson planning, peer observation or lesson study, or in professional development workshops in dedicated time. The enhanced professional learning and professional confidence gained through practice-focused conversations serve both to strengthen theoretical principles of learning and to promote a sharing of leadership activity. Sharing of leadership becomes especially important as schools extend their boundaries to include myriad forms of out-of-school learning, extra-curricular activities, homework clubs and study support, field trips, inter-school and intercountry exchanges and what in Hong Kong is known as Other Learning Experiences (OLE). The mandatory 15% of curriculum time encompasses initiatives in community and social settings and exchanges with other countries. It requires and promotes agency of teachers who have to assume responsibility in contexts other than the classroom, and places students in contexts which do not allow them to simply respond to what their teachers tell them. This links closely to the principle of shared accountability which was seen to encourage moving away from a concentration on external recognition of quality to self-evaluation as a means of improvement.

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Accountability
It is through activities which demand sharing and dialogue that leadership comes to be understood in new ways, within a new frame, as a collective activity, and out of which mutual accountability grows as an integral element. In their rush to modernise and bureaucratise, writes Bajunid (2009), Malaysian political leaders failed to build on the cultural legacy. New waves of legislation have failed to recognise the inherent professional capital, and the deskilling of teachers that occurs

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when the professional capacity is dissipated. Bajunid argues for a reclamation of the intellect, a rebuilding of professional trust in which accountability is inherent and coherent. With a strong and confident sense of what accountability means in a collegial sense, teachers are more likely to be able to address external accountability on their own terms and by reference to values commonly held. Elmore (2005) makes an important distinction between internal and external accountability. The former describes the conditions that precede and shape the responses of schools to pressure that originates in policies outside the organisation. The level or degree of its success is measured by the degree of convergence among what individuals say they are responsible for (responsibility), what people say the organisation is responsible for (expectations), and the internal norms and processes by which people literally account for their work (accountability structures). Elmore concludes that with strong internal accountability schools are likely to be more responsive and creative in facing external pressure for performance. Internal accountability, moral and professional, implies an openness to dialogue, to the nature of evidence, a form of self-evaluation that is genuinely embedded in teachers thinking and day-to-day practice. It is described in New Zealand (Education Review Office 2010) as emergent and business-as-usual self-review, a habit, not an event. Opening up of practice to colleagues whose intentions are to learn rather than to judge, removes, or at least attenuates, anxiety and pressure. It both rests on and engenders trust. When there is a measure of professional trust, it is possible for mutual support to be present, a relationship in which people experience a genuine intention on the part of the other to help without a hidden agenda, without a sense that support comes with caveats and some form of payback. When there is intelligent internal accountability and the critical support of a trusted critical friend, schools are likely to respond more positively to external pressure, confident in the knowledge that they have a rich and unique story to tell, one which rises above the mean statistics and pushes against prevailing orthodoxies of competitive attainment. Writing in a Canadian context Ben Jaafar (2006) describes the tensions between economic bureaucratic accountability and ethical professional accountability. These can, she argues, be addressed by inquiry-based accountability. In this model evaluation at classroom, school and external levels is used as an entry point for professional discussions about opportunities for enhancing learning and assuring that priorities are those that serve the best interests of children and young people. In Hong Kongs School Development and Accountability framework senior leaders and members of the School Improvement Team have been helped to grasp the difference between contractual, professional and moral accountability (Becher and Eraut 1981). The approach to self-evaluation and external review is designed to help school leadership manage the sensitive balance between improvement and accountability purposes, rendering to their political masters that which does not compromise the accountability that is owed to staff, to parents and to students.

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Successful Schools, Successful Leadership, Successful Learning


Embarking on a journey through this volume we encounter in each chapter, the tug of war between complying with performance accountability criteria (efficiency measures) and pursuing broader leadership for learning criteria (effectiveness measures). As Sackney and Mitchell (2008: 126) put it:
We have found that, in successful schools, learning leaders know the people, the organizations, the communities, and the contexts; they ask questions rather than provide answers; and they know what is happening with teaching and learning. Most importantly, they find ways to release the creative energy of teachers and students, for this is the force that fosters experimentation and that build capacity for learning-centred leadership.

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But if learning is a journey, then let us take you with us, to all the continents, covering many of the cultures, religions and political ideologies available, in a search for a better understanding of how these two terms can be put together to form the most powerful human force that we know, the ability to think, to reason and to make decisions based on those, by being able to know or understand something better tomorrow than I do today. That, after all, is the simplest, and perhaps the best, definition of learning.

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Overview of the Handbook


The chapters in this book seek to provide an analysis of the current state of the art of leadership for learning. The handbook is divided into parts that enable the reader to look at a series of chapters on similar themes from different systems and parts of the world. In Chap. 1, the current chapter, we have explored the varied, and sometimes confused, interpretations of leadership for learning. As an introduction to this volume, it tries to lay some of the groundwork for navigating this complex territory, drawing on international studies which bring differing understandings of learning, leadership and their interconnections. With this as background, we then explore a variety of individual issues that focus on leadership for learning, collated into eight different collections of chapters from around the world.

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Part I: Major Themes in Leadership for Learning: An International Review


The first part provides a general review of the work to come where our regional editors get the opportunity to discuss some of the key issues facing their region, but in many ways are facing us all, as move into unchartered waters when it comes to

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1 Leadership and Learning: Paradox, Paradigms and Principles

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seeking high levels of learning for everyone that comes into contact with the education system. In Chap. 2, Ira Bogotch reminds us that educational leaders need to know and understand the cultural history of the country in which they are working and provides a description of why this is especially important in the USA, with the impact of two major, yet sometimes opposing forces of public welfare and economic power. Over time these have ebbed and flowed into priority position and an understanding of how they interact and what this means becomes critical to understanding a way forward for schools in the future. In Chap. 3, Larry Sackney provides an overview of some key issues in Canada such as governance and policy environments where each province goes its separate way, but within a common framework of expectations and requirements. Other significant issues in this volume include the way in which leadership development, especially as it applies to leadership for learning, is managed and the impact of increasing levels of accountability and changing demographics, in the community, also in the teaching community, has had on the focus on learning. In Chap. 4, Beatrice Avalos argues that Latin American countries are different in terms of the curricular areas measured and that results are not only linked to per capita income but they also show an effect on schools and their conditions. The chapter outlines how the Latin American authors deal with these issues. In Chap. 5, Lejf Moos discusses the impact of Neo-liberal Public Management on the development of school leaders in Denmark. He questions whether the current policy of training school leaders and leaders from other human service areas, in the same room and in the same way, is appropriate, and he looks at some government expectations that come from international organisations such as the OECD, together with leadership theories, that create a list that makes it almost impossible for any leader to be successful. In Chap. 6, Jim OBrien reviews the chapters provided by the group of authors who contributed to this handbook from the United Kingdom. The main themes are how students learning can be enhanced, better approaches to assessment which promote student learning, greater collaboration by communities of practice, students exercising leadership, the learning of all the workforce, not just professional teachers and the preparation of school leaders or other school colleagues. There is also a concern with the what, the how and the why, in relation to leadership for learning in schools for the realisation of enhanced student outcomes. In Chap. 7, Neil Dempster considers how the political and policy landscapes of Australia and New Zealand have impacted on school leadership and the moves in both countries to share leadership with teachers and students to establish ways in which the broader community might be included in the learning process. He discusses some of the emerging research that links leadership to student outcomes and some of the directions that research might take in the future. In Chap. 8, Thuwayba Al-Bawani reports that there has been a number of issues raised by significant international reports on education in the Middle East and North African (MENA) region and that quality of teaching, learning and assessment, the culture of learning, a culture of quality, educational leadership and educational development and reform are areas identified as being of special importance. She

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discusses how various MENA countries have attempted to address these issues and identifies a number of areas where further development is needed.

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Part II: Theoretical and Contextual Frameworks for Leadership for Learning
In the second part, we start our journey into the world of leadership for learning by considering some theoretical and contextual constructs of the term. This involves first of all a consideration of the nature of research into education, and specifically leadership, and then we follow up with how interpretations of leadership for learning may differ, depending on where in the world you might be. In Chap. 9, Daniel Muijs analyses recently published articles to explore the dominant types of research in leadership, and concludes that the predominant modes of research in the field are either case study or use survey research methods, with the majority of papers focusing on direct effects or direct effects/antecedents models. Implications of these findings and suggestions for future research are discussed. In Chap. 10, Abdelkader Ezzaki argues that leadership for learning is a multidimensional quality needing a multi-lateral effort and is not the monopoly of any individual or group in the education sector. He suggests that there are a number of facets or viewpoints and discusses each: (a) the public facet, (b) the policy facet, (c) the training and supervision facet, (d) the pedagogical facet, (e) the school management facet, and (f) the instructional facet, all of which need to be considered if success is to be achieved. In Chap. 11, Neil Dempster, Greg Robson and Mike Gaffney review Australian and New Zealand research on leadership for learning, and focus on the Principals as Literacy Leaders [PALL] Pilot Project, an action research project funded by the Australian Government, as a means of raising implications for politicians, policy makers, school leaders, parents, the wider community and researchers themselves. In Chap. 12, Ulrich Reitzug and Deborah West report on their interviews with 40 principals from 11 US states in which the principals talk about their work in this era of high stakes accountability, with a focus on their instructional leadership practice. It proposes a developmental framework of instructional leadership, categorised into direct forms, including linear, organic and prophetic instructional leadership, and indirect forms including relational, empowering and political instructional leadership.

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Part III: System and Policy Issues on Leadership for Learning


In Part III, we consider some of the big picture issues, looking at school systems or political decisions being made that have an impact locally. It is here where we start to see what Townsend (1994) called the core curriculum of leadership for

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learning. It is where government and system expectations, about what all schools and school leaders are expected to do and achieve, come into focus. In Chap. 13, Sue Thomas and Louise Watson examine the changing relationship between national policy and educational leadership in Australian schools, arguing there are insistent demands for higher levels of quality and accountability. They analyse the discourses on quality and examine how these discourses have impacted on an emerging national framework of professional standards for school leaders. In Chap. 14, Qian Haiyan and Allan Walker argue that while the central government in China has moved to deemphasise the examination focus and have given clearly articulated intentions to reform learning, school principals find themselves under pressure from all directions to produce outstanding student exam results. They report on a study of principals work lives as they attempt to address the demands the reforms impose on student learning. In Chap. 15, Clive Dimmock and Jonathan Goh argue that the Singapore Ministry of Education (MOE) has been the main change agent in education since Singapores independence. The reforms are generally carefully planned, coherent and well articulated to ensure principals have clear expectations of how to implement policy in their schools. In Chap. 16, John Burger, Anna Nadirova, Jim Brandon, Bob Garneau and Chris Gonnet consider informed decision making in the province of Alberta, and the benefits and challenges that are associated with that framework. The key aspects of the framework include attaining a comprehensive approach to student assessment; monitoring and understanding students progress while controlling for various educational, cultural and social settings and conditions; supporting deeper analysis of at-risk students achievement and encouraging evidence-informed leadership, programming and decision making. In Chap. 17, Wilfried Schley and Michael Schratz argue we need system thinkers in action and three Austrian initiatives are presented that work together to promote leadership for learning; The Leadership Academy, The New Middle School, and Hierarchy Meets Network, where the Minister of Education has dialogue with innovative educators and removes structural barriers to enable networking and cooperative activity to occur. In Chap. 18, Jos Weinstein, Gonzalo Muoz and Dagmar Raczynski argue that Chiles principals face new demands and have to implement innovative practices even though they lack the legal powers and training to do so properly. They describe the tensions this brings and the leadership practices and opportunities for training that are available. They also offer some policy suggestions that could support this transformation. In Chap. 19, Jim OBrien considers the policy developments for school leadership in the UK. Significant devolution has occurred within the UK with Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland gaining significant powers in relation to their political and education systems. A number of initiatives, including professional development for school leaders, are discussed.

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Part IV: Educating School Leaders for Leadership for Learning


Once policy is set in place, it then becomes a matter of how this policy will be implemented. Following are a series of chapters that look at how school leadership policy is translated into activity at the system level and how leadership for learning has been built into that activity. In Chap. 20, Kenneth Leithwood, Steven Reid, Laurie Pedwell, and Marg Connor consider a major effort by the Ontario government to improve school and district leadership, consisting of 15 aligned but distinct initiatives, mostly built on relevant research. Evidence from evaluations of these initiatives are analysed to produce eight lessons that might be useful to others for developing leadership at a systemic level. In Chap. 21, Christine Forde argues that the question of how educational leaders should be educated is of central concern, and examines one specific area of leadership development, that of headship preparation. There seem to be three broad models of leadership development: apprenticeship models, knowledge-based programmes and experiential learning programmes and Forde uses the case of Scotland, UK as a case study to consider recent research and development projects on headship preparation. In Chap. 22, Richard Ackerman, Gordon Donaldson, Sarah Mackenzie and George Marnik describe the approach to leadership development employed in the University of Maines graduate program, emerging from work over the past 15 years. The program is based on three complementary dimensions of leadership knowledge: cognitive, interpersonal and intrapersonal. The chapter shares some of the learning methods faculty have developed to support these dimensions. In Chap. 23, Julius Jwan and Charles Ongondo discuss the education of school leaders in Kenya. They review how school leadership and learning link to leadership for learning and argue that educating school leaders is a necessary endeavour, but that, in Kenya, there is no specialised training for school leaders. They are selected based on experience in the field as teachers, They end the chapter by outlining possible options to improve leadership for learning in schools in Kenya. In Chap. 24, Fatt Hee Tie examines the role of school leaders in promoting a learning environment, together with capacity building for school leaders in Malaysia. He argues that although principals recognise the need to promote ongoing learning, there is tremendous pressure to ensure students perform well in the examination-oriented education system. He also discusses the Ministry of Educations efforts in developing future school leaders. In Chap. 25, Inbanathan Naicker looks at two initiatives aimed at educating school principals in South Africa. One initiative is the Advanced Certificate in Education: School Leadership (ACE: SL) and the other is the Principals Management Development Programme (PMDP). The content of both programmes, the delivery approaches employed are considered, and an evaluation of them is provided. In Chap. 26, Chrispen Chiome describes the context for leaders in the Zimbabwe Education system, together with four programmes that educate school leaders to

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