Alma Harris


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  • Focus on outcomes for c&yp not institutional success Tri=level reform: Collective responsibility for improved outcomes System based on collaboration not competition System leadership, PLCs: Providing leadership beyond institutional boundaries Learning together as principal mechanism for development Improvement and accountability: Intelligent use of data to track progress at variety of levels Culture of transparent sharing of strengths, weaknesses in support of high performance Accountability focused on improvement
  • It could be as simple as one member of the group doing some reading and telling the rest of the group about it. It could be as complicated as the whole group setting up a cross-phase research project
  • Alma Harris

    1. 1. Distributed School Leadership Professor Alma Harris
    2. 2. Session covers <ul><li>Why Distribute Leadership? </li></ul><ul><li>What is Distributed Leadership? </li></ul><ul><li>How Leadership is Distributed? </li></ul><ul><li>How do you distribute leadership in practice? </li></ul>
    3. 3. “ How do we ensure success for all students in all settings?… “
    4. 4. How do we transform our school systems so all young people can succeed? Page 6
    5. 5. Leadership and Transformation
    6. 6. Leadership and Transformation <ul><li>Leadership is a key lever of high organisational performance. </li></ul><ul><li>Successful organisations have widely and carefully distributed patterns of leadership. </li></ul><ul><li>Effective leaders grow and manage talent </li></ul>
    7. 7. Impact of Leadership on Learning (Leithwood et al, 2007) Leadership is second only to teaching and learning in its impact on student learning. Page 6
    8. 8. Ten Strong Claims about Successful School Leadership (Leithwood, Day, Sammons, Harris and Hopkins ,2010) <ul><li>School leadership has a greater influence on schools and pupils when it is widely distributed </li></ul><ul><li>Some patterns of leadership distribution are much more effective than others </li></ul>.
    9. 9. Schools in Difficulty (Harris et al, 2006) <ul><li>The effects of successful leadership are considerably greater in schools that are in more difficult circumstances. </li></ul><ul><li>So is the impact of teachers. </li></ul>Page 6
    10. 10. Highly Effective Leaders (Harris and Hargreaves, forthcoming) <ul><li>Ordinary Leaders with extraordinary expectations . </li></ul><ul><li>Context matters - effective leaders understand their context and care about it passionately. </li></ul><ul><li>Organisational re-design as a critical element of ongoing improvement </li></ul><ul><li>Distributed leadership as a deliberate strategy but used in very different ways. </li></ul>
    11. 11. Performance Beyond Expectations (Hargreaves and Harris, 2010) <ul><li>Organisations that that perform beyond expectations, engage in distributed leadership underpinned by collaboration as well as competition. </li></ul><ul><li>Lateral and vertical leadership </li></ul>
    12. 12. So Leadership Matters Page 6
    13. 13. But its not enough to know that school leadership matters <ul><li>We need to know what form(s) of school leadership transform organisational and student learning ? </li></ul>
    14. 14. Individual Leadership?
    15. 15. Good to Great : Jim Collins Level 1 Capable individual Level 2 Team manager Level 3 Competent manager Level 4 Effective Leader Level 5 Executive
    16. 16. Level 5 Leaders <ul><li>Channel ego needs away from themselves </li></ul><ul><li>Focus on larger goals </li></ul><ul><li>Are ambitious for their institution and not themselves </li></ul>
    17. 17. Level 5 Leadership <ul><li>Leaders who developed other leaders, distributed leadership and shared power. </li></ul>
    18. 18. ACTIVITY 1 Paired Discussion <ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>How far are you a level 5 leader? </li></ul><ul><li>What’s your evidence? </li></ul>
    19. 20. Technological Change <ul><li>In five years, students will be using technologies which haven’t been invented yet </li></ul>
    20. 21. <ul><li>Leadership for Transformation </li></ul><ul><li>(Senge, 2006) </li></ul><ul><li>In a world of global networks, we face issues for which top down leadership is inherently inadequate </li></ul>
    21. 22. Central Argument <ul><li>A shift to the leadership of learning. </li></ul><ul><li>From leadership as role to leadership as practice </li></ul>
    22. 23. Leadership Practices <ul><li>Past Leadership </li></ul><ul><li>Hierarchical and Fixed </li></ul><ul><li>Role and Position </li></ul><ul><li>Located in one school </li></ul><ul><li>Problem based </li></ul><ul><li>Skills and Competencies </li></ul><ul><li>Control and Efficiency </li></ul><ul><li>Focused on Organisation </li></ul><ul><li>Linked to Remuneration </li></ul><ul><li>Current Leadership </li></ul><ul><li>Lateral & Interchangeable </li></ul><ul><li>Talent and Capability </li></ul><ul><li>Movement around Schools </li></ul><ul><li>Solution Focused </li></ul><ul><li>Practice </li></ul><ul><li>Capacity Building </li></ul><ul><li>Focused on Instruction </li></ul><ul><li>Linked to Professional Growth </li></ul>
    23. 24. Why Distribute Leadership? <ul><li>An organisation cannot flourish – at least, not for long – on the actions of the top leader alone. Schools need many leaders at many levels. (Fullan, 2002) </li></ul><ul><li>Leadership that embraces collective effort, promotes a shared sense of purpose and mission, engages many in collaboration across roles, and develops organisational cultures that impact positively upon teaching and learning. </li></ul>
    24. 25. Why Distribute Leadership? <ul><li>Leadership succession therefore means distributing leadership throughout the school’s professional community (Spillane, Halverson and Drummond, 2001) </li></ul><ul><li>Achieving equitable outcomes for all learners is beyond the capacity of individual highly talented leaders and requires the knowledge and expertise of others in the school working with a shared sense of purpose. </li></ul>
    25. 26. Leadership for transformation is distributed and lateral
    26. 27. So may Labels for Leadership <ul><li>Transformational </li></ul><ul><li>Instructional </li></ul><ul><li>Distributed </li></ul><ul><li>Strategic </li></ul><ul><li>System </li></ul><ul><li>Passionate </li></ul>
    27. 28. But does DL make a difference to organisational/student learning outcomes? (Harris 2008) <ul><li>Improved student outcomes </li></ul><ul><li>Better teacher morale and self efficacy </li></ul><ul><li>Improved organisational outcomes </li></ul>
    28. 29. Effects of Different patterns of Leadership Distribution <ul><li>Schools with the highest student achievement attributed it, in part, to distributed sources of leadership (i.e. school teams, parents and students). </li></ul>
    29. 30. Distributed Leadership and Student Learning <ul><li>Analysis of data suggest that distributed leadership impacts positively upon student achievement. </li></ul><ul><li>(Hallinger and Heck, 2009) </li></ul>
    30. 31. What is distributed leadership (Harris 2008) <ul><li>Leadership shared and extended within and between organisations: </li></ul>
    31. 32. Distributed Leadership is concerned with two things (Harris, 2008) <ul><li>The process of leadership – how leadership occurs within the organisation </li></ul><ul><li>Leadership activity- what people do that enhances and develops their leadership </li></ul>
    32. 33. Distributed Leadership (Harris 2008) <ul><li>Doesn’t mean everyone leads but that everyone has the potential to lead under the right conditions. </li></ul>
    33. 34. What is distributed leadership? <ul><li>Distributed leadership is not something done by one individual to others but is exercised by a range of people within a school, extending to teachers and support staff with no formal leadership status in the school hierarchy, and encompassing pupils and parents. </li></ul><ul><li>It may be a group activity as well as individual action and can emerge from a variety of sources depending on the issue and who has the relevant expertise or creativity. </li></ul>
    34. 35. Two fundamental Principles (Harris and Lambert, 2000) <ul><li>Broad based involvement </li></ul><ul><li>Agency to influence and change </li></ul>
    35. 36. Distributed Leadership in action (Harris, 2006) <ul><li>Leadership shifts according to need </li></ul><ul><li>The leader role generally resides with the person who has expert authority for the designated task </li></ul><ul><li>Collaborative teams formed for specific purposes and then dismantled </li></ul><ul><li>Teams have fluid membership, which changes according to the task, the roles, and the requisite talent. </li></ul>
    36. 37. How Far is Distributed Leadership <ul><li>Simply Delegation by another name? </li></ul>
    37. 38. Leadership Approaches <ul><li>Instruct - Staff are generally told what to do; initiative and ideas come only from the most senior levels of the school; decisions can appear arbitrary and unexpected. </li></ul><ul><li>Consult -The views of staff are actively solicited and listened to; people are informed about plans before they are implemented and given an opportunity for input; decisions are still largely made at more senior levels. </li></ul><ul><li>Delegate -Staff are given clear areas of responsibility within which they can take decisions and exercise initiative; they are held accountable (positively and negatively) for their actions. </li></ul>
    38. 39. Leadership Approaches <ul><li>Distribute -Staff are helped to make an impact more widely across the school; ideas from every level are taken up and championed; it is easy to share ideas and people are aware of what is happening elsewhere. </li></ul><ul><li>Neglect - People are forced to take initiative and responsibility because nobody is interested in what they are doing; responsibilities are blurred and ambiguous; there may be competition and duplication; staff keep their heads down and get on with perfecting their o wn patch. </li></ul>
    39. 40. ACTIVITY 2 Where are you? <ul><li>Instruct High .............................................................Low </li></ul><ul><li>Consult </li></ul><ul><li>Delegate </li></ul><ul><li>Facilitate </li></ul><ul><li>Distribute </li></ul><ul><li>Neglect </li></ul>
    40. 41. Distributed leadership (Harris, 2008) <ul><li>is fundamentally about connecting leadership practice more closely with teaching and learning practice. </li></ul>Page 23
    41. 42. Distributed Leadership (Harris, 2007) <ul><li>Is fundamentally about organisational re-design to generate greater leadership capacity. </li></ul>
    42. 43. What does it look like in schools? Structures Roles Teams Ways of Working Learning
    43. 44. Locating the Tipping Point <ul><li>The crucial question is not whether leadership is distributed but how it is distributed? </li></ul>
    44. 45. Ways to Develop DL Capacity <ul><li>Establishing PLCs </li></ul><ul><li>Engaging in networks and partnerships </li></ul><ul><li>Mentoring, coaching and critical friendships </li></ul>
    45. 46. But it looks Different in Different Schools
    46. 47. Patterns of Distribution Leithwood et al (2006) <ul><li>The effects and impact of distributed leadership on organizational outcomes depends upon the pattern of leadership distribution . </li></ul>
    47. 48. How is Leadership Distributed? Kanes Hill Primary School- Southampton Distributed Leadership by Design ‘Distributed leadership is not just a nice thing to do it’s an absolute necessary thing to do’
    48. 49. Distributed Leadership by Design <ul><li>Team members lead one area but also operate as a second or third tier in another </li></ul><ul><li>St Benedict's School </li></ul>
    49. 50. Distributed Leadership by Default <ul><li>Interchangeable roles every six month </li></ul><ul><li>Shared decision making </li></ul><ul><li>John Cabot School Federation </li></ul>
    50. 51. Distributed Leadership by Demand <ul><li>The SMT continued with top down leadership practices that were killing the school </li></ul><ul><li>Something had to change . </li></ul>
    51. 52. Distributed Leadership by Disaster <ul><li>Central Boys School – a failing school facing closure </li></ul><ul><li>A federation of different schools shared leadership responsibility </li></ul>
    52. 53. Distributed Leadership: 3 Levels (Harris, 2008) <ul><li>Superficial level – delegation </li></ul><ul><li>Subterranean level-new teams, new roles and responsibilities </li></ul><ul><li>Deep level- cultural- the way of working around here </li></ul>Page 13
    53. 54. ACTIVITY 3 How far is DL in your school <ul><li>Superficial? </li></ul><ul><li>Subterranean? </li></ul><ul><li>Deep? </li></ul>
    54. 55. DL can assist us in asking <ul><li>Are we maximising leadership capacity? Are we actively developing lateral and vertical leadership? </li></ul><ul><li>Are leaders in the right places to positively influence instruction? </li></ul><ul><li>Are we abandoning leadership practices that are hindering organisational growth and change? </li></ul>
    55. 56. Wrong Question <ul><li>The question to ask is not </li></ul><ul><li>“ Does distributed leadership make a difference to student learning?” </li></ul><ul><li>BUT </li></ul><ul><li>How and in what form can we maximise the impact of DL on learning?” </li></ul>
    56. 57. Frequently Asked Questions <ul><li>How does it differ from delegation? </li></ul><ul><li>Is the Head redundant? </li></ul><ul><li>What if teachers don’t want to be leaders or see themselves in this way? </li></ul><ul><li>How do formal leaders now see their role? </li></ul><ul><li>What are the barriers? </li></ul>
    57. 58. ACTIVITY 4 What are the barriers to Distributed Leadership? iers
    58. 59. Barriers <ul><li>Leadership viewed only as a formal role </li></ul><ul><li>Culture is not conducive </li></ul><ul><li>Structures get in the way </li></ul><ul><li>Remuneration –pay me more </li></ul><ul><li>Teachers reluctance </li></ul>
    59. 60. Overcoming Barriers <ul><li>Change Structures </li></ul><ul><li>Identify potential – talent spot early </li></ul><ul><li>Free up time </li></ul><ul><li>Create Opportunities to lead/innovate </li></ul><ul><li>Feedback and reward loops </li></ul><ul><li>Networking </li></ul><ul><li>Knowledge sharing processes </li></ul><ul><li>No blame innovation </li></ul><ul><li>Better succession planning </li></ul>
    60. 61. Core Principle <ul><li>The most effective way to manage change is to create it. </li></ul><ul><li>(Drucker,1995) </li></ul>
    61. 62. Paradox 1 (Harris and Muijs, 2004) <ul><li>Without stable, consistent leadership in schools distributed leadership will be incredibly fragile . </li></ul>
    62. 63. Paradox 2 (Leithwood et al, 2006) <ul><li>Distributing leadership to others does not seem to result in less demand for leadership from those in formal leadership positions </li></ul>
    63. 64. Questions Hargreaves and Fink (2009) <ul><li>Are such forms of leadership merely more subtle and clever ways to deliver standardized packages of government reforms and performance ? </li></ul>
    64. 65. ACTIVITY 4 Self Assessment Questionnaire
    65. 66. How do you distribute Leadership in Practice?
    66. 67. VIDEO CLIPS
    67. 68. Reflection and Discussion
    68. 69. Layers of Leadership Distribution <ul><li>Staff </li></ul><ul><li>Pupils </li></ul><ul><li>Governors </li></ul><ul><li>Parents </li></ul>
    69. 70. Professional Learning Communities within, between and across Schools (SEF, 2008) High performing schools help teachers improve instruction by learning from each other. (McKinsey 2010)
    70. 71. The Evidence Base on PLCs (Timperley et al, 2007) <ul><li>Most reliable empirical studies are of school based PLCS </li></ul><ul><li>Definition of PLCs varies </li></ul><ul><li>Collaboration alone can reinforce the status quo </li></ul><ul><li>Challenge and enquiry are key to effective PLCs </li></ul>
    71. 72. Features of PLCs that Impact on Learning ( Timperley et al, 2007) <ul><li>NEW UNDERSANDING </li></ul><ul><li>Dialogue that challenges problematic beliefs and the efficacy of competing ideas </li></ul><ul><li>Expertise external to the group that brought in new perspectives </li></ul><ul><li>ANALYSING THE IMPACT OF TEACHING ON STUDENT LEARNING </li></ul><ul><li>Teachers had high but realistic expectations and believed they could make a difference </li></ul><ul><li>Norms of collective responsibility for students </li></ul>
    72. 73. Two Messages ( Timperley et al , 2007) <ul><li>Simply giving teachers time to talk is not enough to promote their own learning or that of students. </li></ul><ul><li>Existing collaborations, partnerships and networks are not PLCs by default. </li></ul>
    73. 74. Qualities of a PLC that promote teacher and student learning (Timperley et al, 2007) <ul><li>Participants were supported to process new understandings and their implications for teaching and learning </li></ul><ul><li>The focus was on analysing the impact of teaching on student learning </li></ul>
    74. 75. Why PLCs? <ul><li>The ultimate goal of a professional learning community (PLC) can be summed up in three words: </li></ul><ul><li>improved student outcomes. </li></ul><ul><li>Harris and Jones (2010) </li></ul>
    75. 76. What is a PLC? Harris and Jones, 2010 <ul><li>Professional learning communities are based on the simple but powerful idea that if schools are to meet learner needs, they must provide opportunities for teachers to innovate, develop and learn together. </li></ul>
    76. 77. An effective professional learning community has the capacity to promote and sustain the learning of all professionals in the school community with the collective purpose of enhancing pupil learning . Bolam et al (2005)
    77. 78. PLCs (Jones and Harris, 2010) <ul><li>Professional Learning Communities allow teachers to focus their professional development efforts in an area of collective interest </li></ul><ul><li>They allow teachers to work together within and between schools </li></ul><ul><li>Participants learn more through active construction of knowledge rather than through passive reception of information </li></ul>
    78. 79. Features of a PLC (Harris and Jones, 2009) Distributed Leadership Focus on Learner Needs Attention to Instructional Core Enquiry driven- outcomes lead to change in practice
    79. 80. 2 Key Principles (Harris and Jones, 2009)
    80. 81. Characteristics of Professional Learning Communities <ul><ul><li>Shared values and vision </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Collective responsibility for pupils’ learning </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Collaboration focused on learning </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Group as well as individual professional learning </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Reflective professional enquiry </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Openness, networking and partnerships </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Inclusive membership </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Mutual trust, respect and support </li></ul></ul>Bolam et al (2005)
    81. 82. Building Blocks of PLCs (Harris and Jones, 2009)
    82. 83. Distributed leadership (Harris, 2007) <ul><li>is fundamentally about connecting leadership practice more closely with teaching and learning practice . </li></ul>
    83. 84. Different Phases Professional Learning Communities (Stoll et al, 2007) <ul><li>Emerging – acquiring information and beginning to use ideas </li></ul><ul><li>Developing – experimenting with strategies and enquiry </li></ul><ul><li>Extended – greater challenge, more rigour, different, configuration </li></ul><ul><li>Enhanced – – PLC as a natural school improvement process </li></ul>
    84. 85. Task Where would you place your school on the PLC continuum? What needs to happen in your school for teachers to work together more effectively? What are the challenges to this way of working and how may these be overcome?
    85. 86. But... <ul><li>What does a PLC look like in a school? </li></ul><ul><li>What does it do? </li></ul><ul><li>How is it formed? </li></ul>
    86. 87. Who is involved? <ul><li>A PLC begins with a group of teachers </li></ul><ul><li>and a Headteacher who is committed to building professional knowledge. </li></ul><ul><li>As they extend, professional learning communities can merge across schools to form learning networks that include teachers from several schools and/or support staff, Governors and parents. </li></ul>
    87. 88. What happens in a PLC? <ul><li>PLCs engage in processes of enquiry in order to improve student outcomes. </li></ul><ul><li>Through using evidence from school self evaluation, including data and teacher assessment, members of the PLC identify the strengths and needs of a group of pupils and then determine the knowledge and skill required to improve outcomes . </li></ul>
    88. 89. Harris and Jones (2010)
    89. 90. Phases of establishing a PLC Harris and Jones 2010 Establish Enquire Extend
    90. 91. Methods of enquiry/research <ul><li>Peer Observation </li></ul><ul><li>Lesson Study </li></ul><ul><li>Learning Walks </li></ul><ul><li>Other forms of action research </li></ul>
    91. 92. So what? Outcomes result in change : Teachers Instructional Practice Pupils’ learning experiences /outcomes
    92. 93. <ul><li>All practitioners will be entitled and expected to collaborate with others to: </li></ul><ul><li>Reflect regularly on their practice using </li></ul><ul><li>nationally agreed descriptions of practice. </li></ul><ul><li>Use such reflections to identify areas for further development. </li></ul><ul><li>Participate in professional experiences, which will lead to </li></ul><ul><li>further development in the areas identified, based on evidence of best practice. </li></ul><ul><li>At least annually, formally record and make available </li></ul><ul><li>evidence of their participation in this process. </li></ul>Teachers’ Professional Development
    93. 94. Pupils’ Focus (School Effectiveness FrameworkWalWales 2008)
    94. 95. Pupil Leadership – Why? ‘ Giving every single child the chance to be the best they can be, whatever their talent or background’
    95. 96. School Effectiveness Committee Health and Eco School Council Play leaders Peer Mediators
    96. 97. Progress so far Moodle- VLE Assessment for Learning PDAs/ Mini Laptops Topic choice
    97. 98. <ul><li>Pupils as Leaders </li></ul>Peer Mediators Eco Committee School Council Play leaders
    98. 99. Progress so far Enrichment Weeks Garden design Health week Fair Trade Biodiversity week Medieval week
    99. 100. Progress so far Beyond the classroom Trips Visitors Clubs
    100. 101. Learning Logs <ul><li>The children are given free licence to demonstrate their understanding of the target/s in a way that they find most suitable. </li></ul>They have become an integral part of the curriculum and have had a major impact on our drive to develop a more independent learner.  Progress so far
    101. 102. Examples from yr 2 and yr 6 Learning Log
    102. 103. Next steps... SEF Committee <ul><li>We are going to - </li></ul><ul><li>Plan the themes we study in school. </li></ul><ul><li>Upload our homework for discussion with other pupils and teachers </li></ul><ul><li>Share our VLE with other schools around the counrty </li></ul><ul><li>Manage a budget for our enrichment days. </li></ul><ul><li>Award pupil to pupil merits for meeting targets </li></ul>
    103. 104. Without stones, there is no arch. <ul><ul><ul><li>Marco Polo </li></ul></ul></ul>
    104. 105. So is there a Blueprint For DL?
    105. 106. Vision
    106. 107. Transparency
    107. 108. Making Connections: Relationships
    108. 109. Closing gaps
    109. 110. Distributed leadership (Harris, 2007) <ul><li>is fundamentally about connecting leadership practice more closely with teaching and learning practice. </li></ul>
    110. 111. Wherever and Whenever we choose (Edmonds, 1979) <ul><li>We can improve learning and life-chances of young people </li></ul>
    111. 112. You can accomplish anything in life, provided you do not mind who gets the credit (Truman)
    112. 113. Long haul: Two Vital Leadership Tests <ul><li>Leadership that secures improved teaching and learning. </li></ul><ul><li>Leadership that develops other leaders, at all levels. </li></ul>
    113. 114.