The complex task of leading educational change in schools

Dr Kathryn Holmes, Mrs Jennifer Clement and Professor James Albright, School Leadership and Management (2013)

The leadership of educational change in schools is a complex task, particularly at a time when schools are being granted greater autonomy but are also under greater scrutiny through the publication of high stakes test results. 

This paper examines the complexity of changing a school culture and the challenges faced by leaders engaged in this task. It is informed by case studies of two principals involved in a project designed to bring long-term change. 

The study provides insight into the qualities which make change leaders effective, and the different ways that leaders manage the task. The paper concludes with implications for the management and sustainability of change in schools.

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