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Title: Distributed Leadership to enhance participation in school processes and practices to improve learning: A Northern Irish Faith Secondary School Case-Study
Authors: Taysum, Alison
McGuinness, S.
First Published: 2016
Publisher: The European Forum on Educational Administration
Citation: European Studies in Educational Management, 2016, 3 (1a)
Abstract: School leadership has two moral imperatives in Northern Irish schools. Firstly, there is the imperative to provide all students with equal access to a relevant pedagogical experience to achieve identified learning outcomes that link to full economic, cultural and political engagement in society. Secondly, is the imperative to build community in the school and locale. A three-stage action-research project focusing on participation in school processes and practices was carried out in a Northern Irish Secondary School to address these imperatives. This paper reports stage one of the action research carried out by a School Leadership and Management Team (SLMT), in partnership with an Higher Education Institution research team. Evidence revealed students were positive about their overall school experiences whilst teachers were committed to a values-based approach to curriculum delivery. However, students would like to participate more and map their learning to their strategies to achieve their aspirations for future life styles in terms of economic, cultural and political societal engagement. The research found characteristics of good participation were relationships built on trust, respect, optimism, and the recognition of diversity. Stage two of the action research is currently taking place. The SLMT are developing strategies informed by this evidence to enhance the whole learning experience on a platform of trust, respect, optimism, and the recognition of diversity, building on current good practice. The strategies aim to enhance: students’ and teachers’ decision making in their learning; students’ contribution to learning intentions; how students relate their learning to their future involvement in the labour market (economic societal engagement); how students’ learning helps them to understand their community and inherent societal challenges (cultural and political societal engagement); how students’ faith helped their learning. The third stage will be to repeat the first stage of the research to establish the impact of the change strategies. The reader is invited to consider how useful the outcomes reported from stage one of the research might be for SLMTs in schools and colleges in their locale, and to contact the authors if they are interested in receiving papers from stages two and three of the research.
Embargo on file until: 1-Jan-10000
Version: Post-print
Status: Peer-reviewed
Type: Journal Article
Rights: Copyright © 2016, The European Forum on Educational Administration.
Description: The file associated with this record is under embargo while permission to archive is sought from the publisher. The full text may be available through the publisher links above.
Appears in Collections:Published Articles, School of Education

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