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School Leadership for Learning

Insights from TALIS 2013

image of School Leadership for Learning

The OECD Teaching and Learning International Survey (TALIS) is the largest international survey of teachers and school leaders. Using the TALIS database, this report looks at different approaches to school leadership and the impact of school leadership on professional learning communities and on the learning climate in individual schools.

It looks at principals’ instructional and distributed leadership across different education systems and levels. Instructional leadership comprises leadership practices that involve the planning, evaluation, co-ordination and improvement of teaching and learning. Distributed leadership in schools explores the degree of involvement of staff, parents or guardians, and students in school decisions.

How are principals’ and schools’ characteristics related to instructional and distributed leadership? What types of leadership are favoured across countries? What impact do they have on the establishment of professional learning communities and positive learning environments? The report notes that teacher collaboration is more common in schools with strong instructional leadership. However, about one in three principals does not actively encourage collaboration among the teaching staff in his or her school. There is room for improvement; and both policy and practice can help achieve it. The report offers a series of policy recommendations to help strengthen school leadership.

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School leadership and the development of a learning climate and professional learning community in primary and upper secondary school

This chapter addresses the role of educational leaders in primary and upper secondary education. The purpose is to explore to what degree the principal’s role in developing a learning climate and professional learning community within a school at these levels differs from that in lower secondary schools, and what factors may account for these differences. The first part of the chapter describes to what extent principals in primary and upper secondary education are involved in instructional and distributed leadership. In the second section, primary and upper secondary schools across countries and economies are characterised by means of the five aspects of professional learning communities. The third section characterises countries and economies using dimensions of a learning climate in both primary and upper secondary schools. The chapter concludes with an analysis of the effect of instructional and distributed leadership on the development of a learning climate and professional learning community in primary and upper secondary education.

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