Educational leadership for the future

Baxter, J A; Floyd, A and Jewitt, Katharine (2021). Educational leadership for the future. In: Educational leadership for the future: World Education Leadership symposium 2021, 28-30 Sep 2021, Geneva.



Covid 19 has presented unprecedented challenge to school leaders in England: challenge that intensifies as pupils return to full time schooling (Adnan and Anwar, 2020; Dhawan, 2020) The UK government states that schools must offer, ‘a high standard of remote/blended learning’ (DfE, 020720) and the schools’ inspectorate, Ofsted, plan to inspect online provision from January 2021. During the lockdown schools developed online learning strategies, but to date there is little or no knowledge of how these strategies have been led and managed or how they have /or will address the needs of disadvantaged pupils, who are recognised to be disproportionately impacted by school closures (Jewitt et al., 2020). The aim of this UKRI funded project is to address this knowledge gap by investigating how HTs and CEOs in England are are strategically planning for the management of online learning over the next 2 years, and how this builds on current practices. Using a case study approach based in 20 schools, and drawing on data from an online survey (n=4000) and semi structured interviews with Headteachers and CEOs (n=50),the project uses an adaptation of Puntedura’s model of differing degrees of technology integration to establish what level of online provision is being offered at present and what plans schools have for the next 2 years (Puentedura, 2006 2012) These are : L1 – Substitution- technologies are used passively to support teaching; L2 - augmentation – traditional pedagogies are adapted for online use; L3 – Modification-strategic thought is first given to the design of online learning and enhancements that add value to online teaching are implemented in order to improve learner performance; L4 – strategic planning for design of online offerings linking to whole school/ department approaches in online learning. (van der Spoel et al., 2020).As such, the project represents a significant and original contribution to knowledge and will offer unique insights into the short- and medium-term planning for leading online learning in the future.

Theoretical approach

The project takes a strategy as practice approach to strategy, as this has been found to be most useful in our previous project on strategic management in schools ,alongside Puntedura’s model described above (Puntedura, 2012).

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