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ERIC Number: EJ957932
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012
Pages: 12
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 49
ISSN: ISSN-0300-4279
Leading a Small Remote School: In the Face of a Culture of Acceptance
Wildy, Helen; Clarke, Simon
Education 3-13, v40 n1 p63-74 2012
This article presents a case study of one very small school in a remote location of Western Australia. The study is part of a larger programme, International Study of Principal Preparation, investigating the challenges facing novice principals in the first 3 years of appointment and the extent to which they felt they were adequately prepared to deal with the challenges they faced. The international study, of which this is part, involves cross-cultural comparisons of the experiences of novice principals in 13 different countries. The research described in this article addresses the question: What are the distinctive challenges facing leaders of small schools in bringing about changes to school cultures to improve student learning achievements? Two theoretical constructs were used as the lens through which to examine the culture of this small and isolated school: a culture of acceptance and a culture of inquiry. Using an interpretivist approach, data from interviews and observations were constructed into narrative accounts. These accounts demonstrate how the culture of this small remote school can be characterised as having low expectations of student learning low; staffing profiles that were likely to limit the potential of students to achieve at an national age-equivalent level; fragmented parent engagement with student learning and little evidence of innovative practice to challenge the culture of acceptance of low student achievement. The study indicates that close attention to processes devoted to the professional formation of school leaders is vital to promoting a culture of inquiry rather than one of acceptance for informing school improvement.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Australia