The principal as Chief Learning Officer and 'leader of leaders' is the wave of educational leadership for high-performing schools. It requires new thinking, new beliefs, and new practices, and places a diminishing value on hierarchical and bureaucratic practices as currently exists in many schools today. Creating an organization of many leaders, and many leadership possibilities opens the door to greater teacher involvement and increased student achievement. Under the guiding principles of Formative Leadership, developed by Dr. Ruth Ash and Dr. Maurice Persall, Edu-Leadership presents Formative Leadership Tip of the Month! We challenge you to inspire your teachers and students to greater success and higher performance!



Formative Leadership Tip of the Month


Become an instructional leader! The principal as Chief Learning Officer must stay abreast of current instructional thought and practices. High-performing principals understand current teaching models, strategies, and best practices, as they relate to student learning and achievement. To the CLO, instruction is priority #1!



Where to start? 


Questions that a high-performance instructional leader should ask:

  • What do we really believe about how students learn?

  • How well are we providing challenging, interesting work for students?

  • How many of our students are actively engaged on a regular basis?

  • What evidence, other than standardized test data, do we have about how well our students are learning what we want them to learn?

  • What are the major barriers to learning that are most difficult for us to deal with?

  • What do students need to know and be able to do when they leave our school?


What to do next?


Talk about learning, attend seminars, and read constantly. Collaborate with other administrators. Encourage faculty to share instructional and innovative practices. Set high expectations. Celebrate innovation and creativity. Go ahead, be the leader!  



What to read?


Consider the following:

Models of Teaching  by Marsha Weil, Emily Calhoun, Bruce R. Joyce
Classroom Instruction That Works : Research-Based Strategies for Increasing Student Achievement  by Robert J. Marzano, Debra Pickering, Jane E. Pollock

How People Learn : Brain, Mind, Experience, and School  by John Bransford, Ann L. Brown, Rodney R. Cocking

Cognitive Styles and Classroom Learning  by Harry Morgan
Super Teaching  by Eric Jensen

The Principal as Chief Learning Officer: The New Work of Formative Leadership  by Ruth Ash and Maurice Persall

The Principal as Chief Learning Officer: Developing Teacher Leaders   by Ruth Ash and Maurice Persall




The New Work of Formative Leadership. , and Maurice Persall, Director of Graduate Programs. Orlean Bullard Beeson School of Education and Professional Studies, Samford University, Birmingham, Alabama.


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