The importance of effective school leadership is hard to undervalue. The only way a school can nurture successful pupils is by focusing on a strong, effective, and clear distributed leadership model.
Poor behavior and culture in educational facilities are the worst enemies of students’ performance and success. These are the two most common issues facing educational facilities across the globe. Many authorities may not realize this completely. But, these problems can be solved with the help of an effective approach to management inside a facility.
Distributed Leadership: An Effective Model of Management Within Schools
There are thousands of educational facilities facing serious issues with student behavior. Most just call such facilities troubled. However, is that’s really the issue?
When a school becomes troubled, is it really the fault of students? Of course, some groups of pupils may focus on issues that hold them back from perceiving the information effectively. However, what really gets in the way is a lack of culture, which can only be ensured with the help of wise school management.
Therefore, assigning a powerful leader can really make a positive change.
Distributed Leadership for Better Teaching
Due to its beneficial effect on students’ learning, researchers often insist that leadership is a catalyst for change within educational facilities. However, according to research, a regular model that involves a single teacher only improves the situation in school by 5-7%. At the same time, distributed leadership goes far beyond and impacts a facility by 27%.
Based on this data, we can clearly see how wisely distributed roles in the team can change the culture within a particular educational facility. Thus, the students’ achievement trajectory is transformed into a more efficient one.
Such a model contributes to everyone. First of all, the school’s staff will develop a sense of shared responsibility for students. This will not only make the work of the principal and other established authorities simpler. It will also boost the culture and increase teachers’ engagement at the workplace.
At the same time, such an approach will help students feel more comfortable and achieve greater results.
Let’s look at a simple example. A school that has adopted distributed leadership offers its students a wide array of committees, clubs, and other programs to participate in.
All projects are developed and operated by teachers and other staff based on their skills and interests. For example, a literature teacher runs a writing club focusing on explaining to the pupils how to write academic papers right. Thus, they will be able to do it themselves even though there are plenty of platforms to order essay paper from.
How to implement this model to get the most of it? Here are the seven key points to get started with:
Define key members of your team based on their experiences and skills;
Provide teachers and other staff with the opportunities to create and run various programs in a school;
Deliver a decent range of extracurricular opportunities for pupils based on the areas of their interest;
Give your team an opportunity to further improve and develop their programs;
Engage teachers to participate in such projects;
Allocate enough time and resources to help a team improve and develop their professional knowledge and skills;
Do your best to create a solid culture of trust, support, and mentoring.
Applying these simple, but yet effective concepts in a school, authorities can really change the leadership paradigm and stimulate positive change in culture and learning outcomes.
What results can a school observe from the distributed leadership? First of all, teachers and students are cooperating more; they are establishing a better connection. Both parties learn something new even after the classes are over.
Growing initiative among both staff and students enhances the overall culture level and atmosphere in the facility.
As for teachers, they start building a sense of collegiality, which results in a variety of additional benefits, such as:
Sharing resources and knowledge within the team to help each other grow and develop;
Exchanging effective teaching practices for better outcomes;
Collaborating to solve issues together;
Building a curriculum together, etc.
On the Final Note
Having so many benefits for the school’s staff, distributed leadership can’t help but influence the pupils themselves. As teachers become more interested and passionate about what they do, learners' engagement rates will also grow.
Facilities that have already adopted this model of shared responsibility note positive changes in all spheres of their academic communities. The authorities confirm that such an approach leads to higher responsiveness. Engagement and effectiveness both of their teams and pupils increases as well.
All these statistical and research-based facts once more prove that the culture developed in the community has a significant influence on the performance of each member.
In other words, it is just poor leadership that doesn’t allow students and teachers to uncover their true potentials and start achieving better results. Therefore, introducing the right leadership model is vital for every school to succeed!