A leader developing leadership: a case study

McCarthy, Ann Marie (2015) A leader developing leadership: a case study. EdD thesis, University of Lincoln.

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Item Type:Thesis (EdD)
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This study examines the development of leadership. The aim is to investigate the concept of a leader (the headteacher) developing leadership in a new and developing school. The study explores the notion of a vision for leadership, the structures which are evident each year and the development of leaders and leadership within the school.
This case study research was undertaken in a single school at the end of its first seven years at the point when the first cohort of students went to university and the school converted to a new academy. The presence of two consecutive Ofsted judgements of outstanding leadership suggested leadership had developed well making this an appropriate environment in which to investigate leadership development. This post facto study adopts a qualitative approach gathering data from three sources: an extended series of interviews with the headteacher; semi-structured interviews with a sample of middle leaders who had had different experiences within the school and documentary evidence in the form of staffing structures from each of the previous school years. These three sources provided a means for the triangulation of evidence.
A number of points emerge from the study: the variance in perspectives of the headteacher and middle leaders; the changes in structure and the growth of a hierarchy; the development of leadership factors such as communication and external pressures which impact on this. The research identifies a number of key elements: the concept of leadership which appears organic and changing and where different leadership experiences can coexist within a planned leadership model; the relationship between leadership vision, leadership structure and leadership development and the changes to the relationship over time; communicating theleadership vision through change from opening to establishment. The research challenges the belief that leadership is an entity or concept defined by a fixed set of skills and features. The research moves forward from models of distributed and hybrid leadership to demonstrate the complexity, fluidity and flexibility of leadership development. The process of and deployment of leadership affects and is affected by the context and must be able to respond to all contingencies. The quality of information is essential in making decisions regarding leadership. The qualilty of communication of that information enhances knowledge across the organisation and secures commitment and engagement of all middle leaders.

Keywords:Education, Leadership
Subjects:X Education > X300 Academic studies in Education
Divisions:College of Social Science > School of Education
ID Code:19884
Deposited On:22 Dec 2015 14:26

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