The Practice of Distributed Leadership: A Bridge from Social Deprivation to Academic Attainment?
What is explored in this paper is the link between leadership and a successful school, in an area of social deprivation, as objectively assessed. The practice of leadership as opposed to the cult of leadership is uncovered through a series of interviews with staff and the findings indicate that with a high level of distributed leadership organisational learning, staff motivation and empowerment is high. Specifically three themes about leadership were explored in this study. In detail these were how embedded and shared is the vision and ethos of the school, what is practice regarding organisational learning, team working and innovation and the determination of leadership in the school. A range of staff from various levels were interviewed and the findings indicate a high level of distributed leadership, strong sense of shared vision, much team working, collaboration and organisational learning. The findings indicate a link between the practice of distributed leadership and school achievement and pupil attainment.
Keywords: Distributed Leadership, Organisational Learning, Motivation, Shared Vision
Teaching Fellow, School of Education, Queen's University Belfast