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ERIC Number: EJ1154427
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2017
Pages: 19
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1363-2434
Distributed Leadership in South Africa: Yet Another Passing Fad or a Robust Theoretical Tool for Investigating School Leadership Practice?
Grant, Carolyn
School Leadership & Management, v37 n5 p457-475 2017
Distributed leadership, while an established concept in the international literature on education leadership, is slowly gaining prominence in post-apartheid South Africa. This is primarily due to its normative and representational appeal. However, of concern is that the concept has become a catch-all phrase to describe any form of devolved or shared leadership and is being espoused as "the answer" to the country's educational leadership woes. Drawing on a South African publications-based doctoral study of distributed teacher leadership (Grant 2010. "Distributed Teacher Leadership: Troubling the Terrain." Unpublished PhD diss., University of KwaZulu-Natal, Pietermaritzburg) for its evidence, this article argues for a theoretically robust form of distributed leadership conceptualised as socio-cultural practice and framed as a product of the joint interactions of school leaders, followers and aspects of their situation (Gronn 2000. "Distributed Properties: A New Architecture for Leadership." Educational Management and Administration 28 (3): 317-338; Spillane, Halverson and Diamond 2004. "Towards a Theory of Leadership Practice: A Distributed Perspective." "Journal of Curriculum Studies" 36 (1): 3-34; Spillane 2006. "Distributed Leadership." San Francisco: Jossey-Bass). It endorses a sequential distributed leadership framing for the South African context and calls for further empirical studies which interrogate the complex practices of distributed school leadership. For without this theoretically robust work, the article argues, distributed leadership is likely to be relegated to the large pile of redundant leadership theories and become a passing fad.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: South Africa
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A