ERIC Number: EJ943001
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Reference Count: 5
Preparing School Leaders to Serve as Agents for Social Transformation
Brown, Kathleen M.
Scholar-Practitioner Quarterly, v4 n4 p349-352 Win 2010
The major priorities that should guide leadership education in preparing leaders for their work of leading schools in a democratic society are: (1) Teaching leaders to understand the inequities of society; (2) Teaching leaders to serve as agents for social transformation; and (3) Teaching leaders to help each and every student learn and succeed. In the context of preparing such leaders, efforts by preparation programs to involve students in consciousness-raising activities and democratic-defining strategies can lead to reflective analysis and activist intervention. It is important for such programs to bridge theory and practice, to make connections between course material and the broader social context, to explain to pre-service leaders how they might take an active part in bringing about social change, and to validate and incorporate adult learners' personal knowledge and experience. People rarely change through a rational process of analyze-think-change. They are much more likely to change in a see-feel-change sequence. As such, the exploration of new understandings, the synthesis of new information, and the integration of these insights throughout personal and professional spheres can lead future educational leaders to a broader, more inclusive approach in addressing issues of student learning and equity. Respect for diversity and culturally inclusive education entails advocacy, solidarity, an awareness of societal structures of oppression, and critical social consciousness. Preparing educational leaders to accept this challenge necessitates both a close examination of personal beliefs coupled with a critical analysis of professional behavior. Through critical reflection, rational discourse, and policy praxis, preparation programs must implement ways for future leaders to grow in awareness, acknowledgement, and action! According to Giroux (1992), "If students are going to learn how to take risks, to develop healthy skepticism towards all master narratives, to recognize the power relations that offer them the opportunity to speak in particular ways, and be willing to critically confront their role as critical citizens who can animate a democratic culture, they need to see such behavior demonstrated in the social practices and subject positions that teachers live out and not merely propose."
Descriptors: Inclusion, Democracy, Equal Education, Leadership Training, Criticism, Adult Learning, Social Change, Social Environment, Teaching Methods, Consciousness Raising, Activism, Intervention, Advocacy, Social Structure, Teacher Education Programs, Power Structure, Educational Policy
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
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