Connecting School Leaders in an Ethic of Care Community

Year: 2021

Author: Martens, Sherry, Thomas, Christy

Type of paper: Individual Paper

The role of a school administrator continues to expand and intensify leaving many to focus less on self-efficacy as an instructional leader leading to decreased dissatisfaction in the role.   While there are professional learning opportunities for school leaders, they are focused on learning models that are transferable to school-based outcomes and leading teacher learning. This can lead to an increased sense of isolation and the inability to reach out for support from other school leaders. There is a gap in educational research that explores the need for ongoing professional learning opportunities for school leaders that allow for trusting, open conversations that build an ‘ethic of care’ community with peers and mentors. The study explores through interviews how school leaders in a mandatory professional certification program focused on transformational leadership framed through an exploration of understanding self, others, and contexts in critical, caring conversations with each other and the course instructors. This research opens up an important aspect of leadership development that is absent from professional learning for school leaders that can lead to their ability to feel and be more effective in their roles. Keywords: School leadership, leadership development,transformational leadership, principal certification, self-efficacy for school leaders, professional learning, peer coaching