Exploring the role of school leadership in transforming the school into a learning community
Date of Award
Master of Education (M. Ed.)
Institute for Educational Development, Karachi
School as a learning community is becoming one of the prominent notions in the contemporary efforts of transforming schools into learning centers where all the stakeholders are bounded together by a sense of belongingness and shared purpose of collective learning. A community, on this understanding is a group of people linked by a shared consciousness and shared identity where people are open and honest to each other because, they all see the world in the same way. Here, people develop a shared centre of values, sentiments and beliefs which encourages them to think in terms of "we" rather than "I". To transform a school into such a learning community the school leadership plays a critical role. The function of school leadership is growing complex and perplex in terms of its extensive involvement in the social, moral, educational and technical aspects of the school life. This leadership is considered as the entrance through which the norms, values and beliefs inter into the school milieu and become part of the school culture. Therefore, it becomes indispensable to explore the role of the principal as the school leader in transforming the school into a learning community. This study aimed at exploring the role of the school leadership in transforming a school into a learning community. It further intended to explore the strategies adopted by the school leadership and the challenges faced in transforming the school into a learning community. Within the qualitative research paradigm, the case study method was adopted to better meet the nature and requirements of the study. The research was conducted in a private secondary school in Karachi, Pakistan. The key research participant was the principal of the school whereas, the Vice-Principal, the Academic Coordinator, two subject coordinators, three teachers and a group of students and their parents were included as the secondary participants. This study revealed that the school leadership plays a multidimensional and complex role in creating a collegial school culture for the social, moral and educational development of the students. The school principal establishes collaborative relationships amongst all the stakeholders in order to transform the school into a learning community. He plays his role in providing opportunities for the teachers to enhance their professional growth and learning. Apart from the above, the principal also monitors the activities in order to ensure the effective achievement of targets and establish grounds for future review planning and establishing future target. This study has some important implications for theory and practices. The development of human capital in the school is an integral component of the set of efforts for transforming the school into a learning community. The involvement of parents in the affairs of the school has the potential of contributing to the student leaning and holistic development of the children. The role of school principal is multidimensional and complex in his or her efforts for transforming the school into a learning community.
Ali, S. (2009). Exploring the role of school leadership in transforming the school into a learning community (Unpublished master's dissertation). Aga Khan University, Karachi, Pakistan.