Leadership within educational settings is widely regarded as essential for organizational effectiveness and the improvement of learning outcomes. Through an extensive review of theory and practice, Helen Gunter explores the contested field of leadership studies. She describes and critiques the different contributions made by · education management · school effectiveness · school improvement · critical studies. Leadership is examined as function, as behaviour and as leadership relationship, from students as leaders, through to headteachers. The author provides an up-to-date review of current thinking about leadership, which challenges the reader to engage wit
Chapter 4: Research and Researching
Research and Researching
This chapter presents ways in which leaders and leadership in education is being researched. A central focus of this chapter is to investigate the divergence between positivist epistemologies based on quantitative surveys, qualitative work based on ‘situated portrayals’ (Ribbins, 1997b), and critical accounts (Ball, 1990a; 1994b). Inevitably given the volume of work this chapter is selective, but the particular emphasis is on how claims are made about how different methodologies enable knowledge and understanding of educational leadership to be revealed, and this is connected to current debates about educational research. In particular, scientific approaches dominate, even though, as Hall and Southworth (1997) argue, claims about how and why headteachers make a difference are more about assertion and belief than evidence ...