The monthly edition of Education Services Australia’s electronic Curriculum Leadership Journal landed in my inbox today. The lead article is this thought provoking one: ‘The importance of leadership in high-performing schools’. The article was first published in ISQ Briefings Volume 16 Number 6, July 2012.
We know from John Hattie‘s syntheses of meta-analyses related to student achievement, published in ‘Visible Learning’ 2008, that students bring to their learning 50% of that which has an impact on their achievement. Teacher have the next biggest impact on student achievement – 30% impact.
This article investigates some research about the impact of school leadership on student outcomes, suggesting that evidence indicates ‘…that school leadership has an impact on student outcomes second only to the influence of teachers in the classroom…’
As leaders in our schools, how do we stack up?
‘There is a growing body of evidence that school leadership has an impact on student outcomes second only to the influence of teachers in the classroom (Hattie, 2003; Leithwood et al, 2006; Tooley, 2009; Day et al, 2009; New Leaders for New Schools, 2009; Day et al, 2010; Barber et al, 2010).
A recent RAND Corporation report found that nearly 60% of a school’s impact on student achievement is attributable to leadership and teacher effectiveness, with principals accounting for 25% of a school’s total impact on achievement. Furthermore the report found that, while effective teachers have a profound effect on student outcomes, this effect soon fades when the student moves on to another teacher, unless the new teacher is equally effective (New Leaders for New Schools, 2009). In order for students to have high-quality learning every year, whole schools must be high functioning, and this means they must be led by effective principals (ibid)…’ Read on…