TASK Forum 8: Notions of Leadership In Forum 1 above you addressed the notion of what it means to provide instructional leadership at the school level. You also commented on the notions of Sergiovanni. You now need to analyze that set of responses in order to summarize the cohort’s concept of leadership. In order to do so, you will need to read both sets of responses in Forum 1 and identify the major themes, ideas, or elements of leadership that are evident in the responses of your peers. When you have identified this set of themes, open either a blank Word document or a google.doc and list the themes you identified or coding bins. Read each of the responses and use the names of the themes or bins to code each unit of thought or major idea in their responses. A response may have several themes or fall into several bins. For each theme record key phrases or terms used by your colleagues to present their ideas. These recorded phrases/terms are your basic data in this research regarding the meaning of leadership as viewed by members of the cohort. What themes are most prevalent or most powerful? When you have constructed that set of themes and have provided the supporting data (the phrases and terms) for each theme, extend that analysis by writing a synthesis that summarizes the cohort’s notion of instructional leadership. Try to copy that synthesis and paste the text into Forum 8 as your entry. When you post your synthesis, you will have just completed a content analysis research of documents on leadership. RESPONSE To better code the cohort’s responses, we discussed defining Sergiovanni’s 5 sources of authority: Bureaucratic: Traditional management using top-down authority and command leadership. Sergiovanni defines the dominant male source of authority as bureaucratic. Psychological: Sensitivity to interpersonal needs based on moral authority using authentic real world behaviors. Technical: Informative and/or research-based approach. It is a prescribed plan of action or evaluation. Competence: Being knowledgeable about teaching, learning, and curriculum. In addition, it includes staying current on technology, research, and methodology. Virtue: Collective values of the individual and a shared leadership with the community. The influence of moral authority is also portrayed in virtue and can be exemplified as a passion. SYNTHESIS: The educators of cohort 10, while ranging in interpretation of the theme’s used in schools today, have diverse views of how schools should be run, and what is most effective to reaching success. From the five sources of authority; bureaucratic, psychological, technical, virtue, and competence, we see aspects of each theme heavily used, with the exception of bureaucratic. The major themes from the members of the cohort’s data was virtuous and competent authoritative leadership styles. The supplemental themes are the psychological and technical approaches of leadership. Bureaucratic leadership style, although not prevalent in the cohort’s viewpoints, was noted as an important thread throughout the findings. The bureaucratic source of authority is a very traditional approach to leadership. It is, as Sergiovanni states, a “command leadership” style. The majority of the cohort did not rely primarily on this sole source of leadership styles and are exemplified through these sources. PP repeatedly used the word leader in describing the elements with which instructional leadership should contain. “Leader is relentlessly focused on problem solving... leader interprets and analyzes multiple sources of data to make decisions... leader is able to provide and identify needs for professional development...” The traditional definition of the word “leader” lines up with a bureaucratic style and is a significant discrepancy from the general cohort. These are the major pattern addressed pertaining to a bureaucratic type of leader; however, these ideas could be better portrayed as a discrepancy to the overall findings. Virtue is the major theme that our cohort felt is the most prevalent source of authority in leadership. This is the where school leaders lead by example. It is there professionalism. Virtue is inclusive of the concept of community. Sergiovanni writes that, “people become virtuous by practicing virtue and by living with moral mentors.” (The Virtues of Leadership, pp.112) Our cohort indicates that they too, strongly believe in virtue and setting examples of virtue as a way to lead a school. JH states leadership includes “respect, patience, commitment, versatility...” AB finds that “instructional leadership is fostered through vision and common purpose...” LC feels we must “do things because they are the right thing to do...” TB feels we need to have “a commitment to the ideas of the common good...” CC “gets a better feel of the people they are (teachers) and their passion for their practice.” Sergiovanni mentions that when leaders lead by moral authority, they can me more authentic. They should practice leadership by outrage, in other words, they are more passionate about protecting the standards and are more willing to take time to pursue them. MB states “one must possess the attributes of... virtue.” These are the patterns exemplifying virtue. As a whole, competency was the second most identifies theme we associated with as a source of authoritative leadership. Leadership is marked by “technical competency” and a sense of purpose; a competent leader is a master of your craft. VD starts out saying “you must have an excellent understanding of curriculum...” SF followed with “instructional leadership should contain elements of the most current, modernized forms of education...” CC closes by saying “an administrator...(must) be an expert in a variety of methods, be aware of new educational trends, and provide support...” The master teacher does not need to be told what to do, how to do it, and when to do it. This philosophy demonstrates true professionalism, and it becomes part of the school’s culture by example. Once again these finding show that the patterns noted of competency are significant in obtaining effective leadership. As summarized in our finding, the cohort supports the opinions of Sergiovanni in such that the “dominate” sources of authoritative leadership should be virtue and competence. However, psychological and technical sources of authority, although “supplemental” as Sergiovanni states, are still necessary and present in leadership. Our findings on psychological and technical influences on leadership concur with Sergiovanni’s philosophy of leadership. Psychological and technical garnered the same amount of responses from our cohort. Psychological source of authority is what we are often taught in leadership courses. It relies on “personality, motivation”, and relationship building. CM, when expounding on the psychological needs says, “find strength within teachers and recognize and encourage strengths to help them grow...” LO says, “Leadership requires a solid understanding of politics...” This is one discrepancy noted in the data, as this is a break from everyone else in our cohort; many overlooked a mention of politics and its role in leadership. Many members of the cohort talked about the need for passion in being a leader, and how one uses that to influence their leadership. The patterns of psychological style are demonstrated through our findings. This was a secondary theme we discovered through our findings. Technical source of authority focuses on process and procedure without substance and meaning. According to Sergiovanni, technical rational is a “set of prescription” for instruction based upon research; however, educators need to “create their [own] practice in use.” CS states “group and curriculum development, professional development, and opportunities to participate in research are beneficial to creating educational change.” Change is needed, as evidenced by our responses in technical. AB repeatedly talked about change, and stated “This occurs in the formal observation process, curriculum changes, policy changes and more.” Technical is the how, but as leaders we want to foster competency through ownership of the process of educating. These were the many patterns of technical styles, which were included in our secondary theme of our data. As a cohort, leaning on, and interpreting Sergiovanni’s 5 sources of authority, and how they relate to our views on leadership is not an easy task. We agree that there is no one specific way to exhibit leadership. Leadership is a combination of many ideas, practices, modeling, and implementation, depending on the needs of the students, staff, and administration, but it was stated by CM “providing instructional leadership ...inspire teachers, staff, and students through example.” Possibly, it is the notion that it is through the critical role of professional authority and moral leader, that we can, as stated by Sergiovanni, expand our leadership in more important and powerful ways.