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ERIC Number: EJ898246
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010-Oct
Pages: 32
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 46
ISSN: ISSN-0013-161X
The Meaning(s) of Teacher Leadership in an Urban High School Reform
Scribner, Samantha M. Paredes; Bradley-Levine, Jill
Educational Administration Quarterly, v46 n4 p491-522 Oct 2010
Purpose: The purpose of this study is to examine the meaning of teacher leadership from teachers' perspectives. The authors examine teachers' practice of and talk about legitimate sources of power and influence in the context of an urban high school reform. Design: This is an interpretive study of teacher leadership situated in one small high school within a large urban high school (comprised of six small school communities) in a Midwestern city. The school was engaged in a technology-driven, project-based reform requiring team teaching and high levels of teacher involvement in curricular, pedagogical, and other organizational decision making. Researchers conducted monthly observations and two to three in depth-interviews with each participant and collected and analyzed relevant documents during the 2007-08 school year. Participants included all seven teachers in the focus school, the small school administrator, and a district-level administrator. Findings: Data revealed a cultural logic that afforded some teachers more authority than others. Three of the seven teachers were repeatedly identified as being the leaders (despite other teachers actively influencing organizational activities). Analysis of teachers' talk about teacher leadership and related interactions revealed patterns falling into three categories: organizationally legitimized roles, institutionally legitimized content area expertise, and gendered leadership roles. Significance: Because leadership is a cultural construct itself, this study brings to the foreground the meaning(s) of teacher leadership from teachers' perspectives and how these meanings reward or eclipse actual leadership practices. This is especially salient for researchers and leaders interested in the role of teacher leadership in nurturing democratic school communities. (Contains 3 notes.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: High Schools
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A