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ERIC Number: EJ1076173
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015
Pages: 17
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 40
ISSN: ISSN-1363-2434
The "Critical Friend" Role in Fostering Reflective Practices and Developing Staff Cohesion: A Case Study in a New Secondary School, New Zealand
Wright, Noeline; Adam, Amina
School Leadership & Management, v35 n4 p441-457 2015
This exploratory case study, arising from a longitudinal project into the establishment of a new secondary school in New Zealand, examines reflective practice through critical friend roles among staff. The paper describes, through the lens of Bourdieu's logic of practice, the implementation of a critical friendship approach linked to the school leaders' vision and aim regarding learning within open classroom spaces as part of a modern learning environment. Reflective practice involves critiquing, rethinking and reframing existing professional practices, often through a critical friendship approach among school staff within a fostered collaborative and open culture. The researchers interviewed six participants (four leaders and two teachers), observed how the teaching and learning took place in the new open classroom spaces, and reviewed blog posts and the school's website. Findings reveal that critical friendship, as a way to develop staff cohesion, is fostered and supported by the school leaders' vision and actions, while the physical geography of the new classroom spaces, and the redesign of learning, also make this easier to enact. Staff cohesion, trust and openness to peer scrutiny are hallmark of this emerging school culture. These emerging findings provide some insights into how one new school culture develops cohesion with its stated vision and mission.
Routledge. Available from: Taylor & Francis, Ltd. 325 Chestnut Street Suite 800, Philadelphia, PA 19106. Tel: 800-354-1420; Fax: 215-625-2940; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: New Zealand