The changing leadership culture in Northern Territory Indigenous remote community schools: Implications for Indigenous female principals and school-community partnerships

Year: 2007

Author: Kamara, Martha

Type of paper: Refereed paper

The leadership culture in Indigenous remote community schools is gradually changing as education executives in the Northern Territory in Australia are increasingly aware of the relevance of bridging the cultural-gap between Indigenous and contemporary leadership in the administration of these schools. Through professional development programs, Indigenous female school principals in the NT participate in leadership training programs to progress leadership capacity and foster effective school community partnerships. These programs generally emphasise the acquisition of conventional leadership constructs that are characteristic of systemic (Eurocentric) leadership frameworks on the assumption that they have the potential to bring about effective accomplishment of educational outcomes. Hence, Indigenous school principals are encouraged to integrate such frameworks that are culturally appropriate in their schools. Yet there is no agreed understanding among education executives, Indigenous school principals and community leaders about how such integration should occur; degree of integration in specific leadership tasks; or whether such integration could be aligned with school community partnerships. This paper will explore emerging questions on educational change and transformational leadership in Indigenous community schools; and drawing on Hofstede's analysis of cultural disparity, consider implication for Indigenous female principals and school community partnerships in the evolving leadership culture in Indigenous remote community schools.