02 February, 2010

LEADERSHIP BY THE BOOK By Ken Blanchard, Bill Hybels, and Phil Hodges

Reviewed by Mrs. Ancy Radhakrishnan

Ken Blanchard is explaining the characteristics of a SERVENT LEADER by considering Jesus as a leadership model and BIBLE as the textbook. According to him faith walk leadership meant not to convert leaders into Christianity but use the wisdom of Jesus to solve various problems related to customer services, business ethics and personal integrity.

There are two kinds of leaders: those who are leaders first and those who are servants first. People who are leaders first are possessive about their leadership position and they don’t like feedback. They are considering feedback as threat to their position.

Servant leaders have certain values and characteristic in common. They assume leadership only if they see it as the best way they can serve. They aren’t possessive about their leadership. Their paramount aim is the best interest of those they lead (shepherd is for the benefit of sheep). They gain personal satisfaction by watching the growth and development of those they lead.

Leadership begins with a clear vision, which has four aspects: purpose, image values and goals. The traditional pyramidal hierarchy is applicable for the visionary aspect of leadership. Leaders cant and wont delegate the responsibility of establishing vision and direction. But the effective implementation requires the traditional hierarchical pyramid upside down. So the customer contact people can be at the top of the organization and soar like eagles.

A servant leader can follow a five-step way to transform the potential winners to winners.

  1. Tell them what to do.
  2. Show them what to do.
  3. Allow them to try.
  4. Observe their performance.
  5. Praise their progress and redirect.

Servant leadership is not about pleasing everyone. Jesus simple concern was to please God. Leadership without relation to God leads to ego trip. Servant leaders focus on spiritual significance (values) rather than earthly success. They are more concerned about developing loving relation, service and generosity than power, recognition and wealth.

Reading ‘Leadership by THE BOOK’ will help anybody who would like to be a servant leader. Ken Blanchard has pictured various aspects of true leadership in a very simple and accurate way through the conversation between a Professor, a minister and a market leader. Remember, Jesus taught his disciples through simple parables closely related to day-to-day life.

More From the Book:

Extracts from ‘Leadership by the Book’

Checkpoint 1

My Servant HEART-Leadership Character

1.Effective leadership starts on the inside.

  • Real change in behavior eventually requires a transformation of the heart. That’s where the core of who I am resides.
  • Jesus’ message was not just for the mind. It was directed at my heart. It was a real heart attack; it was about character change. Jesus is interested in me being a different person-a good and caring human being.

2.True leadership starts on the inside with a servant heart, then moves outward to serve others.

  • As a servant first and a leader second, I will assume leadership only if I see it as a way in which I can serve. I’m “called” to leadership, rather than driven to it, because I naturally want to be helpful.
  • Jesus did not want his disciples to be leaders first; he wanted them to become servants first. He told them: “Not so with you. Instead, whoever wants to be great among you must be your servant and whoever wants to be first must be slave to all.

3.Leaders with servant hearts have certain characteristics and values in common:

My paramount aim is the best interest of those I lead.

I gain personal satisfaction from watching the growth and development of those I lead.

I have a loving care for those I lead.

I want to be held accountable; I ask, “Has my performance met the needs of those I serve?”

I’m willing to listen. In fact, I love feedback and advice-any information that will help me serve better.

I have my ego under control. I don’t think less of myself, I just think about myself less. I don’t Edge God Out!

Checkpoint 2

My servant HEAD-Leadership Methods

1.Leadership begins with a clear vision.

There are two aspects of leadership-a visionary role (doing the right thing) and an implementation role (doing things right)

A Vision is a picture of the future that produces passion, and it’s this passion that I and other people want to follow. An organization without clear vision is like a river without banks-it stagnates and goes nowhere.

A clear vision has four aspects:

Purpose-telling me and others what business we’re in

• Image-proving a picture of what things would be like if everything were running as planned

Values-determining how I and others should behave when working on the purpose.

Goals-focusing my energy and the energy of others right now.

The traditional pyramidal hierarchy is effective for the visionary aspect of leadership. People look to me as their leader for vision and direction. While I should involve experienced people in shaping direction, I can’t and won’t delegate the responsibility for establishing vision and direction.

2.If I want people to be responsible, I must be responsive.

The implementation role-living according to the vision and direction-is where most leaders and organizations get in trouble. The traditional pyramid is kept alive and well, leaving the customers uncared for at the bottom of the hierarchy. All the energy in the organization moves up the hierarchy as people try to please and be responsive to their boss, leaving the customer contact people-those closest to the customer-to be “ducks,” quacking away: “It’s our policy,” “I just work here,” or “do you want to talk to my boss?”

Effective implementation requires turning the traditional hierarchical pyramid upside-down so the customer contact people are at the top of the organization and can be responsible-able to respond and soar like eagles-while leaders like myself serve or are responsive to our people helping them to accomplish goals and to live according to the vision and direction.

The essence of servant leadership as symbolized by Jesus washing the feet of his disciples becomes operational only when the vision and direction are made clear to everyone.

Clear vision comes first from the traditional hierarchy; implementation then follows with servant leadership, in which the shepherd is there for the benefit of the sheep.

3.The servant leader as a performance coach.

There are three aspects of an effective performance management system:

Performance Planning-All good performance starts with clear goals.

Day-to-Day coaching-Observing a person’s performance, praising progress, and redirecting efforts that are off-base.

Performance Evaluation-Final assessment of a person’s performance over a period of time.

Most organizations emphasize performance evaluation, with some attention to performance planning. The area most often neglected is day-to-day coaching. This is the most important area for servant leaders.

The five key steps for me, as a servant leader, to help potential winners become winners are:

a) tell them what to do

b) show them what to do

c) let them try

d) observe their performance, and then

e) praise their progress, or redirect

The step that’s most often missed is observing performance. When I stop noticing performance, I have stopped being a performance coach. After Jesus gave his disciples the great commission, he told them he would be with them forever. He is always there ready to help. All servant leaders should do the same.

My key to developing people is to catch them doing something right. In the beginning, when they’re learning something new, it can be approximately right. I praise progress. I know it’s a moving target.

Checkpoint 3

My Servant HANDS-Leadership Behavior

1.Servant leadership is not about pleasing everyone.

I want to serve and help people to accomplish their goals and be effective, but my emphasis is on obedience to a higher mission and set of values.

Jesus certainly did not try to please everyone. His simple concern was to please God.

Servant leadership without a relationship to God can lead to an ego trip. E.G.O. = Edging God Out.

  1. Servant leaders focus on spiritual significance more than earthly success.

I’m more concerned about generosity than accumulation of wealth.

I’m more concerned about service than recognition.

I’m more concerned about developing loving relationships than power and status.

When I focus on spiritual significance, fulfilling earthly success can then follow.

  1. Effective servant leaders develop a triple bottom line.

I emphasize that profit is the applause we get by serving our customers well and providing a motivating and empowering environment for our people.

All three factors-financial strength, raving-fan customers, and gung ho people-are important. If one is overemphasized at the expense of the others, our long-term effectiveness is limited.

  1. On a daily basis, effective servant leaders recalibrate their commitment to serve.

I have a support/accountability group to keep me on track

I make frequent use of the three disciplines: solitude, prayer, and the study of Scripture.

I work my way through the twelve steps to Faith Walk Leadership.

Twelve Steps to Faith Walk Leadership

1.I admit that on more than one occasion I have allowed my ego needs and drive for earthly success to impact my role as a leader-and that my leadership has not been the servant leadership that Jesus modeled.

2.I’ve come to believe that God can transform my leadership motives, thoughts, and actions to the servant leadership that Jesus modeled.

3.I’ve made a decision to turn my leadership efforts over to God, and to become an apprentice of Jesus and the servant leadership He modeled.

4.I’ve made a searching and fearless inventory of my leadership motives, thoughts, and behaviors that are inconsistent with servant leadership.

5.I’ve admitted to God, to myself, and to at least one other person the exact nature of my leadership gaps-when I behave in ways that do not make Jesus proud.

6.I am entirely ready to have God remove all character defects that have created gaps in my leadership.

7.I humbly ask God to remove my shortcomings and to strengthen me against the temptations of recognition, power, and greed.

8.I’ve made a list of people whom I may have harmed by my ego-driven leadership, and I am willing to make amends to them all.

9.I’ve made direct amends to such people whenever possible, unless doing so would injure them or others.

10.I continue to take personal inventory regarding my leadership role, and when I am wrong, I promptly admit it.

11.By engaging the disciplines of solitude, prayer, and study of the Scriptures, I seek to align my servant leadership efforts with what Jesus modeled, and to constantly seek ways to be a servant first and a leader second with the people I encounter in my leadership responsibilities.

12.Having had a “Heart attack” regarding the principles of servant leadership, I have tried to carry this message to other leaders, and to practice them in all my affairs.

Read, Learn & Flourish!

For Your Success & Glory!

When the Plan Becomes Part of the Problem

Source: The Centre for Comprehensive School Reform and Improvement

Conventional wisdom says that a person can never plan enough or be too prepared. Conventional wisdom is often correct. Many successful schools—those that ensure that all students achieve at high levels—follow a detailed and comprehensive school improvement plan like a blueprint. But if this is so, why is it that many other schools that produce equally detailed and comprehensive plans do not achieve these same results? In trying to deal with the complexities of school improvement, schools sometimes find that school plans at best don’t help and, at worst, actually become a part of their problem. This month’s newsletter explores four mistakes common to the school planning process and improvement plans and offers solutions to correct them.

Mistake #1: An improvement planning team with the wrong members (and usually too many of them).
When deciding on the composition of a school improvement planning team, many district leaders and principals err on the side of too much inclusion. They invite everyone and anyone with decision-making authority or with a connection to key stakeholder groups to participate. Their motive is good: If all groups are represented and have the opportunity to shape the improvement plan, everyone will support the plan when it’s time to implement it. But including everyone and anyone is a mistake.

Solution: Strategically select a school improvement planning team.
Building a quality team is an important first step in drafting a quality school improvement plan. Filibert (2003) asserts that “careful consideration is needed to determine who should be a part of the team and who is willing to look at the present and project into the future.” Leaders need to carefully consider the characteristics of an effective school improvement team when selecting members. Effective teams do include representatives of a variety of school community constituencies, but they are also of a manageable size (six to eight members); able and willing to work collaboratively with the building administration to ensure progress; and committed to the sometimes lengthy task of developing a meaningful school improvement plan (Barnes, 2004). Careful thought also should be given to clarifying the role of planning team members. Are they there to actively represent a stakeholder group and reflect the group’s opinions (e.g., teachers representing a grade level)? Or are they expected to represent the perspective of a particular stakeholder group but not speak for anyone else? Either role is appropriate and can serve the team well. However, the more clearly the expectation of participants is defined, the more effectively they will be able to contribute to the work of the planning team.

Mistake #2: An incomplete and unfocused needs assessment.
Sometimes school improvement planning teams go through the motions of conducting a needs assessment because “that’s what you’re supposed to do.” The team collects data haphazardly—the more numbers the better—with little thought given to why they are being collected and how they will be analyzed and even less thought to clarifying the connection between raw data and real improvement. A school improvement plan based on an unfocused needs assessment is a mistake.

Solution: Use the four W’s and the H to ensure a purposeful and comprehensive needs assessment.
Data-driven school improvement planning is crucial, and conducting a comprehensive needs assessment is the first step in that process. But before one set of test scores is copied or one interview is conducted, the team must agree on what data will be collected and why. In simple terms, a needs assessment defines and analyzes the gap between where a school is and where it wants to be. For example, many schools want to focus on better teaching, more purposeful parent involvement, and raising student achievement. Their first step should be to collect data to get an accurate picture of the school’s current status in those areas. Once the “what” and “why” have been established, the team should move on to address the “who,” “how,” and “when” before it begins data collection:

• Who will be responsible for conducting the assessment? Who will gather the data, and who will ensure that the needs assessment is conducted with fidelity?
• How will data be collected? Will only existing data be reviewed? Will new data be collected through interviews or classroom observations? How will the team ensure that data collection tools are valid and reliable? How will the data be analyzed and by whom?
• When will data collection and analysis take place, and how long will it take to complete? (adapted from Beadle de Palomo & Luna, 2000).

Many states have developed templates and planning tools designed to help school planning teams work through these steps. For example, the Illinois and the Florida Departments of Education have developed templates that guide districts and schools through the data collection and analysis processes (see Resources listing).

Mistake #3: The “Everything but the Kitchen Sink” school improvement plan.
Look out for a school improvement plan that promises to be everything to everyone and declares that all goals and objectives will be accomplished within one academic year. One survivor of the school improvement planning process recounts his experience by lamenting, “we wound up setting an impossible number of goals” and “committing to far more activities and initiatives than anyone could possibly monitor, much less successfully implement” (Schmoker, 2004). More is not necessarily better when it comes to planning, and creating an “everything but the kitchen sink” school improvement plan is a mistake.

Solution: A school improvement plan focused on a finite set of goals and strategies that are linked to improved student outcomes.
Keep it simple! Goals should be bold and audacious, but at the same time strategic and limited in number. For example, is it really necessary to have separate curriculum implementation goals for each student subpopulation or each grade level? Probably not. Instead, schools are advised to develop strategic goals that address common themes that emerge from their data analysis. Written goals and corresponding objectives should be SMART; that is, specific (clear and explicit), measurable (so that anyone can determined if the goal has been accomplished), attainable (realistic and within the school’s span of control), relevant (directly related to identified need), and time-bound (with a beginning, interim benchmarks, and an end) (adapted from Meyer, n.d.). SMART goals can be written for many purposes, but in schools they should be focused specifically on improved student outcomes since the purpose of the school improvement plan is to outline the conditions necessary to ensure that all students achieve at the highest levels.

Mistake #4: Creating a plan that is celebrated at the beginning, reviewed at the end—and left in a drawer in between.
Sometimes a school improvement team develops a plan that perfectly delineates a path to results. It is based on relevant data. Its goals are clear and specific and focused on student achievement. The team and key school stakeholders are committed to a rigorous timeline for implementation and even an end-of-year evaluation. But they make a mistake in making no provision for monitoring progress throughout the school year.

Solution: Build in ongoing evaluation to facilitate continuous planning.
“How are we doing?” is a question that every school improvement planner should learn how to ask and answer. Schmoker (2004), citing the work of Kouzes and Posner, contends that successful strategic plans “promote smart, short-term cycles of action, assessment, and adjustment.” In school improvement plans, the completion of each of these short-term evaluation cycles offers an opportunity to revisit goals, adjust strategies, and check for student progress. Effective planners build in these cycles as the plan is being written, defining what will be evaluated, when and how it will it be evaluated, what the process will be for amending the plan if necessary, and perhaps most importantly, how the changes will be communicated to ensure that all key stakeholders continue to work toward the same goals. Engaging in a process of continuous evaluation “will take you back to the beginning of a new cycle—revisiting your original student-achievement goals, establishing new student-achievement goals, and developing new essential questions, based on learning from the previous cycle” (Barnes, 2004, p. 21).

Worthwhile improvement planning is not simple. To be done right, it requires thought and, ironically, planning. While many components of a school improvement plan merit attention, focusing on building an effective improvement planning team, conducting a thorough needs assessment, creating goals that are meaningful and attainable, and committing to a cycle of continuous evaluation create a school improvement plan that is just that—a plan that will guide a school to improvement.

Barnes, F. D. (2004). Inquiry and action: Making school improvement part of daily practice. Providence, RI: Annenberg Institute for School Reform at Brown University. Retrieved March 24, 2006, from http://www.annenberginstitute.org/tools/guide/index.php

Beadle de Palomo, F., & Luna, E. (2000). The needs assessment: Tools for long-term planning. Washington, DC: AED Center for Community-Based Health Strategies. Retrieved March 24, 2006, from http://www.coach.aed.org/pubs/factsheets/NeedsAssessment.pdf

Filibert, C. T. (2003). Winning the game: Effective teamwork equals successful school improvement. Honolulu, HI: Pacific Resources for Education and Learning. Retrieved March 24, 2006, from http://www.prel.org/products/paced/sep03/pc_winning.htm

Meyer, P. J. (n.d.). Attitude is everything! (Attitude & Motivation, Vol. 2). Waco, TX: SMI International.

Schmoker, M. (2004, February). Tipping point: From feckless reform to substantive instructional improvement. Phi Delta Kappan, (85)6, 424–432. Retrieved March 24, 2006, from http://pdkintl.org/kappan/k0402sch.htm

Florida Department of Education Division of Public Schools, Bureau of School Improvement. (2005). A technical assistance document for: Planning and evaluating your school improvement process (8th ed.). Tallahassee, FL: Author. Retrieved March 24, 2006, from http://www.bsi.fsu.edu/pdf/2005TA.pdf

Illinois State Board of Education, Federal Grants and Programs Division. (2004). Template for a K–8 school improvement plan (SIP) aligned to the ISBE SIP rubric. Springfield, IL: Author. Retrieved March 24, 2006, from http://www.isbe.state.il.us/sos/htmls/improvement_process.htm

Rhode Island Department of Elementary and Secondary Education. (1999). SALT guides: Writing a school improvement plan. Providence, RI: Author. Retrieved March 24, 2006, from http://www.ridoe.net/schoolimprove/salt/guides/sip_writ.htm

Read, Learn & Flourish!

For Your Success & Glory!

The Role of Principal Leadership in Improving Student Achievement

Source: The Center for Comprehensive School Reform and Improvement

Communicating with Administrators, Middle Years (5-9), Preteen Years (9-13), Teen Years (13-19)

School and district leadership has been the focus of intense scrutiny in recent years as researchers try to define not only the qualities of effective leadership but the impact of leadership on the operation of schools, and even on student achievement. A recently published literature review titled How Leadership Influences Student Learning contributes to this growing body of knowledge by examining the links between student achievement and educational leadership practices.

Authors Leithwood, Seashore Louis, Anderson, and Wahlstrom (2004) make two important claims. First, “leadership is second only to classroom instruction among all school-related factors that contribute to what students learn at school” (p. 7). Second, “leadership effects are usually largest where and when they are needed most” (p. 7). Without a powerful leader, troubled schools are unlikely to be turned around. The authors stress that “many other factors may contribute to such turnarounds, but leadership is the catalyst” (p. 7).

The review, commissioned by the Wallace Foundation, is the first step in a five-year, 180-school study of the links between student achievement and educational leadership practices. The planned study is a joint effort of the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education at the University of Toronto and the University of Minnesota’s Center for Applied Research and Educational Improvement. The foundation’s first report could be released as early as November.

This month’s newsletter summarizes what the review reveals about the basics of successful education leadership and offers practical suggestions for their implementation.

The Basics of Successful Leadership

The authors warn that it is tempting to get caught up in defining the many adjectives often used to describe leadership in education literature (e.g., participative, instructional) but note that ultimately these descriptions focus on style, not substance. A more productive strategy, they contend, is to examine the following three sets of practices that make up the basic core of successful leadership:

  • Setting direction.
  • Developing people.
  • Redesigning the organization.

The authors acknowledge that “rarely are … [these] practices sufficient for leaders aiming to significantly improve student learning in their schools. But without them, not much would happen” (p. 10).

Setting Direction

Examining the Evidence. The review suggests that leaders who set a clear sense of direction have the greatest impact. If these leaders help to develop among their staff members a shared understanding of the organization and its goals and activities, this understanding becomes the basis for a sense of purpose or vision. The authors emphasize that “having such goals helps people make sense of their work and enables them to find a sense of identity for themselves within their work context” (p. 10).

The authors suggest that school improvement plans can be a means of setting direction. “It’s difficult for schools to make progress without something to focus their attention, without any goals,” says coauthor Kenneth Leithwood, a University of Toronto education professor. “Improvement plans are a rational model about how to act purposefully in schools.”

Practical Application. Effective principals understand direction setting. They know that an investment of time is required to develop a shared understanding of what the school should “look like” and what needs to be done to get it there. They know that teachers and other staff included in identifying goals are much more likely to be motivated to achieve those goals. These sentiments are echoed by Doris Candelarie, executive director of School Effectiveness in Brighton, Colorado, and former principal of Vikan Middle School in Brighton. “We set school goals, individual goals, team goals. That builds community and the spirit around it”(Center for Collaborative Education, 2003). Teachers who are asked to engage in open and honest communication with the principal, to contribute their suggestions, and to voice their concerns are much more likely to follow the direction set by their leader. Further information about organizing, planning, implementing and sustaining reform can be found in The Center’s policy briefs at www.centerforcsri.org

Developing People

Examining the Evidence. Much of the focus in education literature regarding the principal’s role in developing staff members has been on instructional leadership, which emphasizes the principal’s role in providing guidance that improves teachers’ classroom practices. Philip Hallinger’s instructional leadership model has been the most researched. It consists of three sets of leadership dimensions—defining the school’s mission, managing the instructional program, and promoting a positive learning climate—within which 10 specific leadership practices are delineated (Leithwood, Seashore Louis, Anderson, & Wahlstrom, 2004).

Now, in addition to instructional leadership, the review finds that researchers also are paying close attention to what is being termed a leader’s emotional intelligence—his or her ability and willingness to be “tuned in” to employees as people. “Recent evidence suggests that emotional intelligence displayed, for example, through a leader’s personal attention to an employee and through the utilization of the employee’s capacities, increases the employee’s enthusiasm and optimism, reduces frustration, transmits a sense of mission and indirectly increases performance (McColl-Kennedy & Anderson, 2002)” (Leithwood, Seashore Louis, Anderson, & Wahlstrom, 2004, p. 24).

The authors cite the following more specific leadership practices that help develop people:

  • Stimulate them intellectually.
  • Provide them with individualized support.
  • Provide them with an appropriate model.

Practical Application. Schools have interpreted these research findings in a variety of practical ways. Group book studies, lesson study in critical friends’ groups, professional development sessions at conferences, or visits to high-performing schools all provide intellectual stimulation. At Deborah Hoffman’s Franklin Elementary School in Madison, Wisconsin, for example, teachers participate in book groups that focus on race and student achievement. They also are encouraged to grow intellectually by pursuing additional certification in English as a second language (Hoffman, 2005).

Developing people through individualized support can take many forms in schools. Literacy or math coaches can model lessons, observe classes, and provide constructive feedback to teachers. Teachers also benefit from peer observations, debriefing sessions with colleagues, and feedback from the principal. New teachers in particular gain support from mentor teachers who are carefully assigned to assist them in the first few years of teaching. At Eastgate Middle School in Kansas City, Missouri, Principal Tim Mattson created a new position for an instructional coach whose job was to serve as a mentor for new teachers and help experienced teachers to develop strong leadership skills as well as implement effective reading strategies based on their examination of student work (Center for Collaborative Education, 2003).

Redesigning the Organization

Examining the evidence. The review notes that the organization teachers and principals operate in can sometimes thwart their best intentions to use effective practices. In some contexts, the authors observe, high-stakes testing has “encouraged a drill-and-practice form of instruction among teachers who are perfectly capable of developing deep understanding on the part of their students” (p. 11). Furthermore, “extrinsic financial incentives for achieving school performance targets, under some conditions, can erode teachers’ intrinsic commitments to the welfare of their students” (p. 11).

Successful educational leaders resist these and other organizational pitfalls. Instead, they are purposeful about turning their schools into effective organizations. They do this by developing and counting on contributions from many others in their organizations to do the following:

  • Strengthen the school’s culture.
  • Modify organizational structures.
  • Build collaborative processes.

Practical Application. What does this process of redesigning the organization look like on the ground? Principals strengthen school culture when they clearly and consistently articulate high expectations for all students, including subgroups that are too often marginalized and blamed for schools not making adequate yearly progress. At an Alliance for Excellent Education event in August, Mel Riddile, principal of J.E.B. Stuart High School in Falls Church, Virginia, eloquently addressed this issue: “We have a moral and ethical imperative to educate every student. [If] we let them languish in mediocrity, shame on us” (Riddile, 2005). Principals can modify organizational structures, for instance, by changing schedules to ensure that teachers share common planning time and use that time to discuss improving instruction. This kind of restructuring also reinforces the use of collaborative processes among teachers. Given sufficient time and consistent messages about the value of collaboration, teachers learn to trust their colleagues and are more willing to share their best practices and challenges.

Redesigning the organization from the inside out requires that leaders identify and capitalize on the competence of others and both model and require collaboration. As author Carl Glickman (2003) observed: “In successful schools, principals aren’t threatened by the wisdom of others; instead, they cherish it by distributing leadership” (p. 56).

Broad Goals for School Leaders

This literature review on educational leadership notes that current evidence allows us to infer some broad goals for school leaders. The authors acknowledge that further study will reveal more about what is needed to identify specific leadership practices that lead to the achievement of these goals. They suggest that principals do the following:

  • Create and sustain schools that can compete with private, charter and magnet schools.
  • Empower others to make significant decisions.
  • Provide instructional guidance.
  • Develop and implement strategic and school improvement plans.


How Leadership Influences Student Learning emphasizes that the most influential educational leaders remain the principal and superintendent, and that their leadership is inextricably linked to student performance. Having examined a host of factors that contribute to what students learn at school, the authors conclude that the contribution of leadership is second in strength only to classroom instruction. And, effective leadership has the greatest impact where it is most needed—in the nation’s challenged schools. These facts make the case, the authors assert, for improving not only the recruitment and training of school principals but also their ongoing development and evaluation. In addition, they cite the need for expanded study of how leadership in other areas of the school community—such as teacher leadership—can contribute to student achievement.


Center for Collaborative Education. (2003, fall). Conversations: Turning Points Transforming Middle Schools, 4(1), 1–12. Retrieved September 14, 2005, from http://www.turningpts.org/pdf/Conversations_Fall03.pdf

Glickman, C. D. (2003). Holding sacred ground: Essays on leadership, courage, and endurance in our schools. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.

Hoffman, D. (2005, May). Keynote presentation given at annual Institute for CSR State Coordinators, Washington, DC.

Leithwood, K., Seashore Louis, K., Anderson, S. & Wahlstrom, K. (2004). How leadership influences student learning. New York: Wallace Foundation. Retrieved September 14, 2005, from

Riddile, M. (2005, August). Presentation given at Alliance for Excellent Education “Americans on High Schools: In Need of Improvement!” Washington, DC.

Read, Learn & Flourish!

For Your Success & Glory!

01 February, 2010

Education as a Tri-Polar Process

Adams in his book ‘Evolution of Education Theory’ said that education is a bipolar process in which one personality acts upon another to modify the development of other personality. It considers that the in the process of education two persons are involved. The one is the educator and the other is the educand. It proposes that the teacher seeks the modification of the development not only through imparting knowledge and skills, but also through her direct influence on the child’s personality. The bipolarity of the educational process ceases to exist when the educator and the educand both become one and the same person. It so happens when the educand feels a drive to educate himself, when he tries to modify his own nature, develop his own will and purpose, build his own character, acquires knowledge and skills by his own efforts. In that case, education becomes unipolar. It is then when educational process achieves the main ideal. Self-ex-pression, self-motivation, self-improvement and self-control become the key words and bipolarity ceases to exist.

The educational process not only has a psychological side involving the educator and the educand, it has the sociological aspect too. The educand has to live in and for the society he belongs to. True education comes through the stimulation of the educand’s endowments by the demands of the social situation in which he/she finds them. The educator is requires to stimulate the educand’s power in the total social setting. Thus, the social aspect of the educational process becomes more important than the psychological aspect. Hence, educational process is tri-polar in nature as it involves the interaction between the two of the three namely the social factors, the educator and the educand. The function of the educator becomes then the modification of the personality of the educand in the light of the needs of the society. In this sense, John Dewey holds, education is a tri-polar process and not bipolar one.

Relationship between School and Society

School and society are interdependent. Education is an activity that goes in the society and its aims and methods depend on the nature of the society in which it takes place. ‘As is the society, so is the school’. The school functions according to the needs and cultural backgrounds of the society and modifies the society by providing leaders and reformers.

Role of School in Society

The society establishes school to provide education to its members. School should act as a social agency and an agency of social control.

1. School is an institution that fulfills the needs of the society. School transmits the cultural heritage to the younger generations. The school moulds the innate capacities of the child, so as to fit in the society. It makes the individual social animal. The school provides better understanding for interpersonal and inter-group relationship.

2. School is a miniature society. School reflects all qualities of the society. By attending the school, a child learns how to accustom with the society. Individual should develop according to the needs of the society. “School must become child’s habitat to be a miniature society.”

3. Goals and methods are decided by the society. Society is dynamic. It grows and changes and as such these social changes must not only be reflected in education but also must effect it. The goals and aims are decided according to the nature of the society. The goals of the totalitarian society differs from that of democratic society, individual is as important as the society. Flexibility and diversity is the main feature in democratic society.

4. School should seek the co-operation of the society. School should take two-way traffic activities. It should educate not only the children, but it should throw open its doors to the members of the society also. By providing books, by eradicating literacy in adults, the school should enter into depths of the society. Flexibility and diversity is the main feature in democratic society.

5. School provides leader and reformers. By providing good leaders and reformers, school leads the society towards the social change. It prepares the members of the society to accept the change. It changes traditional society into transformational society.

6. School transmits culture with necessary changes. Culture changes from generation to generation with the influence of other cultures. Moreover, there may be traditional dogmas and orthodox superstitions beliefs in the existing culture. School considers the above things and transmits the modified culture to the younger generations. Thus, schools established by society remodels the future society so as to fit in the ever changing world.

Schools have a big role in strengthening the society and its members. Schools must be able to cater to the present needs of the society. It is a most powerful instrument of social change. But, unfortunately, today many schools are participating in the race of competition and have become profit/business oriented. The very foundation of the schools has become weak. Today, schools are working as manufacturing plants by producing a good earner, rather than working on ethics and morality issues. Students have been motivated to become multitalented in the race of globalization and less priority has been given to the development of moral and social values among them. Schools are the main agent of social change that can eliminate various social evils and problems. But, this can be make possible only when the schools of today would start realizing that their primary responsibility is not just to prepare the students for the sake of student’s own life, but to prepare them to work as leaders and reformers for the sake of whole society.
Read, Learn & Flourish!
For Your Success & Glory!