ERIC Number: ED371445
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1994-Jan
Heroes, Teams, and Teachers: A Study of Leadership for Change.
Heller, Marjorie F.; Firestone, William A.
Research on leadership for change should focus more on what leaders do and less on who the key leaders are. This study identifies a set of change leadership functions, including providing and selling a vision of change, obtaining resources, providing encouragement and recognition, adapting standard operating procedures, monitoring the improvement effort, and handling disturbances. A study of program implementation in eight schools--four that successfully institutionalized an innovation, three that only institutionalized it in a token form, and one that institutionalized it among a subset of teachers--suggests that these functions do contribute to change and are performed by teams, including the central office, the principal, teachers, and outside consultants. In three of the fully institutionalized schools, the principal served as "head cheerleader," encouraging teachers after observations, during planning meetings, and through a positive demeanor toward the program. Analysis of specific functions showed that teachers contributed to a sustained vision of Social Problem Solving (the innovation), encouraged their peers, and served as informal monitors. However, teachers could not provide programmatic resources and lacked a formal mechanism for contributing to curriculum standardization decisions. There was no critical leader in the change process. Change leadership was a team enterprise, not the work of a single hero. Teachers need further leadership opportunities. (Contains 41 references.) (MLH)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A