Theme/Keywords: System Leadership

Project Title: Lost in Translation: System Leadership in a large academy

Project Status: Complete

Project Summary:  

This essay will explore, through the model of system leadership, the geographic and demographic challenges facing large academy chain networks. The conflicts, challenges and practices of leadership within individual academies will be examined by scrutinizing any correlating or conflicting patterns between these systems; the moral imperative of the leader, and the sponsor.

Can a system leadership model effectively support each silo’s leadership structure within an agreed and conflict free moral framework? Hill, et al. (2012: 11) discuss factors that enable the growth of academy chains and the moral dilemma that CEO’s face.  The Hill, et al. study suggests the possibility of a moral conflict between the system and the needs of the individual academy. But what if the parts of the system are geographically and demographically disparate, as with some large sponsors? With such a diverse population of schools, is it still possible to work across the different contexts under a common moral imperative? Or are school leaders inherently selfish towards their own context?

Theme/Keywords: Professional Development; Technology; Learning Communities; Personal Learning Networks

Project Title: Blogospheres and Tweetonomics

Project Status: Complete

Project Summary:  

This project will examine the extent to which professional learning communities (PLCs) can be supported by online personal learning networks (PLNs); exploring the impact of social networks and PLNs on the development of professional practice. 

Bolam, et al. (2005) suggest an effective PLC contains eight key elements: shared values and vision; collective responsibility for pupils’ learning; collaboration focused on learning; individual and collective professional learning; reflective professional enquiry; openness, networks and partnerships; inclusive membership; mutual trust, respect and support. It is these criteria that this report shall use to interrogate online digital social media networks and tools as support for PLCs. 

Do online spheres such as Twitter and Microblogging have any place in the development of professional practice? And, can groups such as #CPchat; #SLTchat, and #ukedchat contribute to the organisation of PLCs; making a difference to the professional practice of teachers and impacting the classroom?


Project Title:  Are students more likely to be engaged in a lesson that promotes cooperative learning?
Project Status: Ongoing

Link: N/A

Project Summary:  

This project examines the suggestion that cooperative learning can improve engagement, as long as it is enforced with the necessary structure / explanation and encouragement of social skills to enable the activities to be productive and challenging.