'The theory and practice of democracy and democratic leadership have implications for how we understand what ought to be counted as 'improving schools' In this book Woods focuses on the idea of democratic leadership, examining what is meant by democratic leadership, what forms it can take, and how it is relevant to school education and learning. He shows how the ideals and theories of democratic leadership can translate into practice, and sets out some of the challenges that democratic leadership poses in the context of contemporary education . Democratic Leadership in Education challenges conventional approaches to leadership and many of the assumptions inherent in educational policy. It is about understanding and exploring both the idea of democratic leadership and its practical relevance through examples drawn from practice and research. An enlightening resource for practitioners and students on professional development and academic courses, this book will be essential reading for all policy makers, academics and others (such as inspectors) who critically examine leadership and management of educational institutions.
Chapter 4: Why Democratic Leadership?
Why Democratic Leadership?
In any age and social climate, there are some sweeping beliefs that seem to command respect as a kind of general rule – like a ‘default’ setting in a computer program; they are considered right unless their claim is somehow precisely negated. While democracy is not yet universally practiced, nor indeed uniformly accepted, in the general climate of world opinion, democratic governance has now achieved the status of being taken to be generally right. The ball is very much in the court of those who want to rubbish democracy to provide justification for that rejection.1
The significance of democratic leadership, and the reasons for attaching importance to it, are intimately bound up with its perceived meaning. In Chapter 1, it was ...