Pub. date: 2006 | Online Pub. Date: September 15, 2007 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412939584 | Print ISBN: 9780761930877 | Online ISBN: 9781412939584| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
J. Patrick Grenda
Educational researchers have long examined the link between the importance of principal leadership and student achievement, concluding that successful educational leaders have a powerful influence on the effectiveness of the school and student learning. In fact, school leadership has been found to have a significant impact on student learning, second only to the effects of the quality of curriculum and teachers' instruction. Until recently, most research assumed that leadership must come from the school principal. For decades, studies on leadership have documented specific leader traits and behaviors, focusing on the top of the hierarchical organization—the principal. There is now much greater emphasis placed on the idea of distributed leadership , shared by multiple individuals at different levels of the school organization. The idea that a single “hero” leader can lead and transform a school alone has become obsolete. The task of leading today's schools has become so multifaceted and complex ...