Now showing 1 - 10 of 42
  • Publication
    Open Access
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  • Publication
    Open Access
    A qualitative study of Singapore primary school teachers' conceptions
    The notion of educational change is no longer new among practitioners, policy-makers and academics in education. Although much has been said and debated in relation to educational change, along with the increase in our understanding of it, the voice of teachers, parents, principals and pupils are, however, rarely heard within the Singapore context. This paper seeks to provide the platform for part of the voice, specqcally teachers, to be heard by describing a qualitative research study that was conducted on 19 school teachers from three primary schools in Singapore with regard to educational changes. From the findings of the research, the author will present a conceptual proposal in response to current educational change challenges.
      250  2912
  • Publication
    Open Access
    An investigation of the impact of leadership practices on student learning and development outcomes in Singapore schools
    (Office of Education Research, National Institute of Education, Singapore, 2020) ;
    Policymakers and the public in many developed countries have demanded for greater public school accountability in the hope of improving academic and non-academic school outcomes, as well as decreasing the achievement gaps among subpopulations of students (Heck & Moriyama, 2010). In response, there has been a growing conversation amongst educational practitioners and researchers on how educational leadership might be linked to effective teaching, and student learning and ‘achievement’ outcomes. Educational-effectiveness researchers have attempted to link (directly and/or indirect) existing research with theory about educational processes to identify contextual, school factors (including leadership), and classroom factors (including teacher effectiveness) to student learning and ‘achievement’ outcomes (Creemers, 1994; Creemers & Kyriakides, 2008; Heck & Moriyama, 2010; Leithwood & Mascall, 2008; Scheerens, 1990, 1992; Stringfield & Slavin, 1992; Teddlie & Reynolds, 2000). Also of interest are (i) possible differences in the contribution of the leadership practices, (ii) whether some practices are better performed by certain people or roles instead of others, and (iii) whether some strategic efforts to implement changes in the school’s instructional practices are more effective than others (e.g., Creemers & Kyriakides, 2008; Firestone & Martinez, 2007; Leithwood et al., 2004; Locke, 2003).

    It is clear that the ‘Principal as the sole decision maker’ conception of leadership and bureaucratic organizational structures are no longer consistent with the new school leadership climate (Pearce & Conger, 2003). Proponents of this view have argued that a dispersed form of leadership is thought to enhance opportunities for the organization to benefit from the capacities of more of its members rather than a single leader (Leithwood & Mascall, 2008). Leithwood and Mascall (2008, p.530) further argued that in so doing, organizational members can develop “a fuller appreciation of interdependence and how one’s behavior affects the organization as a whole”. This clearly reflects the growing appreciation of the informal dimensions of organizations often among those who are not in positions of formal authority (Gronn, 2003; Tschannen-Moran, 2004; Wheatley, 2005). Evidently, leadership and school improvement are increasingly conceptualized as organization-wide phenomena (Manz & Sims, 1993; Ogawa & Bossert, 1995). The evidences from previous studies have provided the impetus for greater understanding of the links between leadership, teaching and learning. Clearly, these issues warrant greater empirical attention. More specifically, educators and researchers are interested in understanding of the following:
    (i) Impact of educational policies and system structures on school leadership practices; (ii) Impact of leadership practices on teaching; (iii) Linkages of core leadership practices in schools (i.e., instructional leadership, distributed leadership, teacher leadership, and transformational leadership); (iv) Impact of leadership practices on student learning; (v) Impact of teacher variables (i.e., teaching competencies, engagement and job satisfaction) on student learning.
      321  155
  • Publication
    Open Access
    The relationship between instructional leadership and distributed leadership of middle leaders in a Singapore secondary school context
    (2022)
    Khoo, Mee Yoong
    ;
    Pek, Alastair
    ;
    The concepts of instructional leadership (IL) and distributed leadership (DL) have been featured prominently in much of the recent discourses on educational leadership research and are considered as key factors for school effectiveness. However, a review of the literature revealed few attempts that empirically establish the link between these two leadership-related constructs. The purpose of this study was to address this gap and investigate the relationship between dimensions of IL and DL. The dimensions of DL include empowerment, collective engagement, shared decision-making, and developing leadership; while the dimensions of IL are aligning teaching practices to the school vision, leading in teaching and learning, developing a conducive environment for teaching and learning, and promoting professional development. The study sets out the qualitative methodological approach to uncover possible intricate links between the dimensions of the two leadership constructs within a Singapore secondary school context. Leadership practices enacted by the middle leaders demonstrated value for pragmatic efficiency, teacher autonomy and teacher agency which land well in the Singapore education system that values teachers’ innovation and contribution in a fluid education system for the twenty-first century education. Elements of situations like routines, tools, structures and functions shaped the leadership practices of DL and IL.
      76  79
  • Publication
    Restricted
    Leadership for collective learning: An effective distributed perspective
    (Office of Education Research, National Institute of Education, Singapore, 2020) ;
    Since the turn of the 21st century, the concept of distributed leadership situated within the context of school improvement has risen in importance. This is due to the growing demands on schools from a wide range of stakeholders within education contexts that are increasingly becoming more complex. Educational contexts are increasingly getting complex insofar as the changes accompanying educational reforms are characterized by intensity, rapidity, fluidity and uncertainty. Policymakers and the public are demanding greater public school accountability in the hope of improving academic and non-academic school outcomes, as well as decreasing the achievement gaps (Heck & Moriyama, 2010) through improvements in teaching and learning. It is therefore understandable that contemporary school leaders use up more time and energy in managing increasingly complex relationships, and resort to distributed leadership where leadership decisions are delegated and shared to other staff members beyond the purview of school principals.
    In the Singapore context, delegation or sharing of leadership decisions to middle managers such as department heads (HODs) or subject heads (SHs) has been a common place for more than two decades, especially that pertaining to instruction. In this sense, distributed leadership is closely tied to instructional leadership insofar as the former allows instructional leadership practices to be delegated or shared to other staff members beyond school principals or vice-principals. The link between instructional leadership and distributed leadership has been observed (Lieberman & Miller, 2011; Spillane & Louis, 2002; Timperley, 2005). Hence, instructional leadership practices become more dispersed across the school organization, making it more effective to bring about enhancements in teaching and learning. However, over the last decade, leadership decisions pertaining to instruction have been delegated and shared to teacher leaders. This is a result of the growing demands placed on schools so much so that administrative decisions have to be passed on from senior to middle leaders, which result to middle leaders delegating or sharing their decisions on instructional matters to teacher leaders. These teacher leaders include Senior or Lead Teachers (STs and LTs), Subject and Level Reps, and Professional Learning Community Team Leaders – all of which are involved in making leadership decisions on instruction.
      84  5
  • Publication
    Open Access
    Action research: From action research to critical action research
    (2003-11)
    Although action research has been around and had been used for a couple of decades in the world of academics and practitioners, its value and essence are often under appreciated. In the Singapore education scene, some may perceive action research as beneficial especially with the slew of recent reforms that demand greater accountability not only to the product, but also the process of education such as the School Excellence Model (SEM) and External Validation (EV). Some are given the choice between WITS (Work Improvement Teams) or LCs (Learning Circles) – the latter is one form of action research. In this paper, the author will provide the rationale for the use of action research in current change agenda, and conclude by emphasising on the necessity for action research to be critical, reiterating the salient proposition that “action research is a participatory, democratic process concerned with developing practical knowing in the pursuit of worthwhile human purposes” (Reason and Bradbury, 2001, p. 1).
      148  121
  • Publication
    Open Access
    Leadership and organizational change in Singapore: A baseline study
    (2015) ; ; ; ;
    Chua, Catherine Siew Kheng
    ;
    Reyes, Vicente C.
    ;
    Choy, William
    ;
    ;
    Intan Azura Mokhtar
    ;
    ;
    Teng, Antonia Kit Wah
    ;
    Shaljan Areepattamannil
    ;
    Lin, Tzu-Bin
      504  319
  • Publication
    Open Access
      277  248