26 SES 08 B, Leadership and School Improvement
The present paper builds on and contributes to work in the field of distributed leadership. Although studies in distributed leadership have established that school leadership is important for quality improvement in schools (Day et al., 2009; Leithwood, Harris, & Hopkins, 2008; Robinson, 2008), there has not been a lot of research on (re)distribution of leadership in reorganized leadership teams as a quality improvement strategy facing the challenge that leadership has become too complex and demanding for the principal alone. This study provides additional insight into how organizational restructuring of the leadership team is experienced by deputy heads, in their new role as leaders with expanded leadership responsibility towards teacher staff and instructional leadership. This is a qualitative study that analyses how 15 deputy heads from four lower secondary schools experience their new leadership role, and which patterns characterizes their experiences. Although numerous studies (Aas, 2013; Dale, Gilje, & Lillejord, 2011; Jorunn Møller & Fuglestad, 2006) and education policy ( Ministry of Education and Research (2003-2004, 2007-2008) have identified the importance of leadership, little analytic attention has been paid to how school leaders understand and interpret change of own role when reorganising the school leadership team. We address this issue by demonstrating how deputy heads experience their changing leader roles in Norwegian municipalities. Norway is an interesting case in this respect, as education policy to a great extent is influenced by international advice from the OECD (Møller, Prøitz, Rye, & Aasen, 2013).
The OECD-report “Improving School Leadership – Policy and Practice» (2008) underlines school leadership as important for the development of student outcomes, and is a representation of powerful economic and political interest in school leadership. One major purpose is to perform instructional leadership because the attention must be directed towards development of teaching and student learning (Robinson, 2011). These policy documents together with international focus on instructional leadership, as presented in the “Improving School Leadership-report from 2008 (B. Pont, D. & Nusche, & H. Moorman) and the conclusion in the OECD-report TALIS (Vibe et al., 2009) focusing on a lack of tradition for instructional leadership, has led to several quality improvement strategies in municipalities in Norway. One such improvement strategy has been to reorganize leadership in schools with the purpose to increase performing instructional leadership practice. Consequences of this reorganization is that the previous deputy head role, often characterized by delegated administrative tasks, changes into an instructional leadership role which there has been little tradition for in Norwegian schools (Vibe, Aamodt, & Carlsten, 2009).
Objective: The present study aims to identify how institutional reorganization of leadership role and practices is experienced and understood by significant actors.
Research question: How do deputy heads in lower secondary school experience their new role as leaders – a role characterized by expectations on performing instructional leadership?
Within the framework of distributed leadership, in which the present study is grounded, the focus changes from viewing leadership as a trait within a person towards viewing leadership as a practice produced in the interactions between people concerned with performing tasks. This view is operationalized through the concepts of “leader-plus” aspect and “leader-practice aspect” (Spillane, 2006). The leader-plus aspect focuses on distribution in relation to responsibilities of tasks, division of labour, and puts an analytical lens towards structure, functions and design. The leadership practice aspect is directed towards the product of interactions between leader, follower and aspects of the situation. We take into consideration that institutions are different, each with their unique history and culture; this, in turn, impacts change and stability, and new demands and initiatives are translated actions through established cultures (Mahoney & Thelen, 2010).
Aas, M. (2013). Ledelse av skoleutvikling. Oslo: Universitetsforlaget. Dale, E. L., Gilje, N., & Lillejord, S. (2011). Gjennomføring av utdanningsreformer i kunnskapssamfunnet. [Oslo]: Cappelen Damm Akademisk. Day, C., Sammons, P., Hopkins, D., Harris, A., Leighwood, K., Gu, Q., . . . Kington, A. (2009). The Impact of School Leadership on Pupil Outcomes Final Report (pp. 206). University of Nottingham. Hatch, J. A. (2002). Doing qualitative research in education settings: State University of New York Press, Albany. Krueger, R. A., & Casey, M. A. (2009). Focus groups: a practical guide for applied research. Los Angeles, Calif.: Sage. Kvale, S., & Brinkmann, S. (2009). Interviews: learning the craft of qualitative research interviewing. Los Angeles, Calif.: Sage. Leithwood, K., Harris, A., & Hopkins, D. (2008). Seven Strong Claims about Successful School Leadership. School Leadership & Management, 28(1), 27-42. Mahoney, J. a., & Thelen, K. A. (2010). A theory of Gradual Institutional Change. In J. Mahoney & K. A. Thelen (Eds.), Explaining Institutional Change Ambiguity, Agency, and Power: Cambridge University Press. Ministry of Education and Research (2003-2004). White Paper 30 Kultur for læring [Culture for Learning]. Oslo: Author. Ministry of Education and Research (2007-2008). White Paper 31 Kvalitet i skolen [Quality in School]. Oslo: Author. Morgan, D. L. (1997). Focus Groups as Qualitative Research (Vol. 16). California: SAGE Publications, Inc. Møller, J., & Fuglestad, O. L. (2006). Ledelse i anerkjente skoler. Oslo: Universitetsforlaget. Møller, J., & Ottesen, E. (2012). Kunnskapsinformert ledelse i skolen - en utfordring for skoleeier. In J. S. Jøsendal, G. Langfeldt & K. Roald (Eds.), Skoleeier som kvalitetsutvikler. Oslo: Kommuneforlaget. Møller, J., Prøitz, T. S., Rye, E., & Aasen, P. (2013). Kunnskapsløftet som styringsform. In B. Karseth, J. Møller & P. Aasen (Eds.), Reformtakter om fornyelse og stabilitet i grunnopplæringen. Oslo: Universitetsforlaget. Pont, B., Nusche, D., & Moorman, H. (2008). Improving School Leadership, Volume 1. Paris: OECD Publishing. Robinson, V. M. J. (2008). Forging the links between distributed leadership and educational outcomes. Journal of Educational Administration, 46(2). Robinson, V. M. J. (2011). Student-Sentered Leadership. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass. A Wiley Imprint. Spillane, J. (2006). Distributed Leadership. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass. A Wiley Imprint. Vibe, N., Aamodt, P. O., & Carlsten, T. C. (2009). Å være ungdomsskolelærer i Norge: Resultater fra OECDs internasjonale studie av undervisning og læring (TALIS) (Vol. 23/2009). Oslo: NIFU STEP.
00. Central Events (Keynotes, EERA-Panel, EERJ Round Table, Invited Sessions)
Network 1. Continuing Professional Development: Learning for Individuals, Leaders, and Organisations
Network 2. Vocational Education and Training (VETNET)
Network 3. Curriculum Innovation
Network 4. Inclusive Education
Network 5. Children and Youth at Risk and Urban Education
Network 6. Open Learning: Media, Environments and Cultures
Network 7. Social Justice and Intercultural Education
Network 8. Research on Health Education
Network 9. Assessment, Evaluation, Testing and Measurement
Network 10. Teacher Education Research
Network 11. Educational Effectiveness and Quality Assurance
Network 12. LISnet - Library and Information Science Network
Network 13. Philosophy of Education
Network 14. Communities, Families and Schooling in Educational Research
Network 15. Research Partnerships in Education
Network 16. ICT in Education and Training
Network 17. Histories of Education
Network 18. Research in Sport Pedagogy
Network 19. Ethnography
Network 20. Research in Innovative Intercultural Learning Environments
Network 22. Research in Higher Education
Network 23. Policy Studies and Politics of Education
Network 24. Mathematics Education Research
Network 25. Research on Children's Rights in Education
Network 26. Educational Leadership
Network 27. Didactics – Learning and Teaching
The programme is updated regularly (each day in the morning)
- Search for keywords and phrases in "Text Search"
- Restrict in which part of the abstracts to search in "Where to search"
- Search for authors and in the respective field.
- For planning your conference attendance you may want to use the conference app, which will be issued some weeks before the conference
- If you are a session chair, best look up your chairing duties in the conference system (Conftool) or the app.