What is Instructional Leadership?

The post of a school principal is hectic and time-consuming. The principal plays an important role in an educational institution and the impact they have on their staff and students is huge. Thus, the method which they use to approach the institution they lead is important. One such method of approach to lead an organization is called Instructional leadership.

Instructional leadership is a model of school leadership in which a principal works alongside teachers to provide support and guidance in establishing best practices in teaching.” (Brolund, 2016). The principal works closely with teachers to ensure the achievements of the students are at their best.

ln order to do this, the leader should be a supportive person the teachers can rely on and should be a knowledgeable individual. The principal is supposed to develop a vision for the school to work towards and communicate the same to the teachers as well. The vision should be aimed at increasing student success, and ensuring that the teachers accept and apply the vision when they teach, says Liisa Brolund in her 2016 article Student Success through Instructional Leadership. It is only when the teachers are clear of their goal, that the teachers are likely to align their ‘personal development’ and ‘professional growth’ along with the school’s vision and goals, Lisa writes.

Further, she speaks on the qualities that are required for an instructional leader. They are to provide support to the teaching staff “in their teaching practice, professional development, and resource management.” The leader should encourage teachers to attend more sessions that will hone their professional skills, provide them with the resources required and materials that the teachers might find useful. To summarise, they are to provide a conducive environment for better coaching and mentoring, efficient management of resources, and providing developmental opportunities. Teacher autonomy is a necessity, but making the teacher aware of good methods of teaching is also important. Thus, having conversations with their teaching staff on how to teach is also crucial. Principals should make themselves and the staff more comfortable to have such conversations. “Building a positive learning community among staff and creating a safe environment for teachers to take risks can make difficult conversations easier.” (duPlessis, 2013). To learn from their teaching staff and listen to what they have to say is a good attribute of an instructional leader. This will enable them to understand the team that they are leading.

And so, students rely on their teachers for guidance, and the teachers rely on their leaders for support. To conclude, an instructional leader leads the teaching staff in a manner that lets the teachers deliver their best to the students.

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