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Successful principalship
Student agency
Leader’s values
Beliefs and identities
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Ho, J., & Chua, P. M. H. (2019). Successful principalship: Beyond leadership practice and teacher agency. International Studies in Educational Administration, 47(1), 20-37.
This paper presents a case study of successful principalship in a Singapore school, conducted as part of the International Successful School Principalship Project (ISSPP) to examine the characteristics and practices of successful principals. The study followed the research protocol developed by the ISSPP, consisting of the collection of multi-perspectival qualitative data from the school leadership team, teachers, students and parents. Analysis was grounded and then categorised into key topics specified by the ISSPP. The study contributes to the literature on leadership by affirming the importance of the leaders’ values, beliefs and identities in shaping leadership practice, and the development of student agency as a pragmatic intermediate strategy that can be used to convince teachers to change their pedagogy, which takes a longer time to achieve. The study suggests a need to investigate in more detail the possible use of student agency as a catalytic leverage for teacher epistemic change. In addition, the study underscores the need for further research on the principal’s use of networking to achieve school goals. The findings are based on one specific case and transferability is therefore limited. In addition, the school studied is not a typical mainstream school in Singapore and the principal is also atypical in terms of his training and prior experiences. Nevertheless, many of the findings are congruent with existing studies on principalship in Singapore.
1324-1702 (online)
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