Education Vital Signs: Leadership
Don’t Count Us Out
Don’t Count Us Out, a new study from Public Agenda, reveals that, in the minds of the public, more information does not equal more trust. Results indicate that a media blitz of glossily presented facts and figures might actually make the public more distrustful. The study found that responsiveness of an organization can be more valuable than benchmarks. To the public, being able to find someone in an organization who listens respectfully to their ideas is an important dimension of accountability—perhaps the most important one.
Seventy-one percent of the 400 charter school leaders surveyed for You’re Leaving? expect to leave their schools within five years. Charter schools are particularly vulnerable when leadership turns over because charter schools may not have a pool of ready candidates (especially independent charter schools), may operate in politically antagonistic environments, or require a leader who is a very close “fit” with the school and its mission.
Learning from Leadership
Rapid principal turnover has been shown to hurt student achievement, but while the principal is the main source of leadership in any school, in more successful schools the principal is not its only source. Learning from Leadership, a new report from the Wallace Foundation, states that higher-performing schools provide more opportunities to teacher teams, parents, and students for input, influence, and engagement. The report finds that principals lead most effectively when they work collaboratively with district personnel, other principals, and teachers.