¶ … Educational Leadership
The Masters of Education (M.Ed.) in Educational leadership is designed to assist aspiring school administrators in synthesizing and utilizing current research trends to practical real world environments. The purpose of this essay is to summarize the activities and learning achievements that were developed in understanding new competencies related to educational leadership. This essay will explore the five prescribed program outcomes and how I approached these outcomes with artifacts designed to illuminate the lessons behind the program outcomes. This essay will document the program activities that were specifically tailored to address each of the program outcomes.
Outcome 1: Visionary Leadership
The program Visionary Leadership is based on the ideals that school administrators drive the processes behind the educational system. Creating a goal or wide spanning objective that resonates with the entire school and community is the essence of this program outcome. Developing visionary leadership skills requires school administrators to develop plans and models that can allow the plan to materialize and blossom. Additionally, this program outcome intends to assist this process by self-reflection through the monitoring of the efficiency and effectiveness of the mission and vision as it is carried out.
The concepts behind this program outcome are somewhat vague, which provides many of the projects and investigations involved in this course applicable to this outcome. Essentially, this is the most important aspect of educational leadership because everything begins at the top and rolls downstream. The importance of leaders performing in an honest and ideal fashion is critical in executing any mission or vision. Words themselves are meaningless without action, and visionary leadership must create tangible results.
This program outcome was represented in the artifact that was created in the progress monitoring program that was designed to address the enhancement of academic outcomes, the very purpose of education itself. This activity was technology driven and was based in finding trends and within data recorded. Using standardized test scores in accordance with statistical inference allows the progress of students to be objectively attained and measured.
This activity represents a directed and concerted effort to address the key component in educational system. Assessment performed in this fashion demonstrates the leadership emphasis on academic achievement and the importance of success in reaching goals. Progress monitoring also can include the parents of the families in a new way, strengthening the bond between family and school that is necessary to create an effective learning environment.
Outcome 2: Instructional Leadership
The program outcome, Instructional Leadership, suggests that administrators need to be proficient at the actual art of teaching. Problem solving skills are tested in this program outcome, as discrete and approachable problems are solved with appropriate leadership skills and activities. This program outcome intends that students become more involved in the decision making and strategic formulation of curriculum and lesson planning to best enhance the educational experience. Other key components of this outcome is the ability to formulate teams to address instructional issues and to fairly and competently assess student's performance.
The activity of curriculum mapping was chosen to align itself with the program outcome of instructional leadership. Being a 7th grade ELA teacher I participate in the formulation and development of curriculum at my school. I participate in this activity with the other ELA teachers and the assistant principal. This process is designed to create a curriculum map that assists in formulating appropriate lessons that are aligned with school objectives. This is the essence of instructional leadership.
These mapping sessions are strategic in nature and compose the base work of all the lessons that will be taught in the ELA program at our school. This team effort approach allows individuals within the mapping group to apply their own special skills. It takes instructional leadership, however to synthesize and compose these elements into a practical force that can be used effectively and efficiently.
To illuminate the importance of this process, the curriculum maps themselves can be referenced to help demonstrate the skill and care that is dedicated to these efforts. These maps are based in 7th grade reading and demonstrate the care and detail that went into the planning processes associated with this activity. In order to fulfill the outcomes, the maps themselves allow teachers to insert their own subjective and personal insights into their own class while still maintaining organizational standards. The most important aspect of this activity is striking a tempered balance that represents the total qualities of the faculty involved in the mapping planning and process itself.
Outcome 3: Administrative and Ethical Leadership
The program outcome Administrative and Ethical Leadership demonstrated...
This masters program, by applying the concepts contained in this outcome, attempts to demonstrate the idea of total leadership, in and outside the classroom. The ethical qualities associated with this outcome also provide unique challenges to the student as many personal ideals and attitudes must be challenged and discovered to determine best courses of action.
This program outcome is based on the ideas of culture and environment. Ultimately, a strong school leader must be able to create a learning environment that promotes fairness, safety and encouragement. School leaders must remember that one of the most important aspects of education is being and advocate for the students. This means that teachers must often make sacrifices in personal judgment to do the right thing.
To address this program outcome, the artifact that applies to this area involved discipline referral. The tricky subject of administering discipline in today's school's system exposes the many risks and problems if this process is not performed in a fair and ethical manner. The rights of students are important and need to be recognized, however an undisciplined environment serves no body in any complete way, requiring school leaders to apply reason and sound judgment learned thorough experience and wisdom to master this outcome.
To demonstrate the importance of this subject, a case study was used to help promote the ideals of discipline referral. This exercise chronicled the typical problems that school leaders may face when dealing with discipline issues in a modern age. This study examined the problems of undisciplined students acting out and causing major problems including threatening violence. This case study represented many instances of discipline problems at my school and provided a very realistic training tool to explore the issues behind administrative and ethical leadership issues.
The case study required me to create a discipline referral process that can be applied in real life if necessary. By integrating the actual district and city polices that applied to my school, I was able to develop a plan that met the unique circumstances of the problems child depicted in the case study. This guiding influence led me to create a referral program based on qualitative levels of behavior that depict the intensity of the problems. This program directly supported the ideas behind the program outcome by " creating a learning culture inclusive of operations and resources for an efficient and effective learning experience to enhance academic achievement for all students."
The case study also introduced the idea of culture and race as an important concept within the ethical considerations of a discipline referral program. The current state of race relations within the culture has not impacted my educational experiences in any dramatic manner, however, the risk of such problems are very great and to understand the importance of ethical and racial diversity within the classroom is necessary for school leaders to reasonably approach problems that deal with such issues/
Outcome 4: School and Community Leadership
The program outcome, School and Community Leadership, asks the student to explore the environment outside the school and into the general environment. The impact of the community on the educational system is very strong and in order to achieve at the highest levels, it is necessary for school leaders to build and foster strong relationships within the general community. By addressing school issues at the community level, school leaders promote the ideas of respect and fairness throughout the school by demonstrating the collective needs and wants of a strong school system. We are only as strong as the weakest among us, and the community can only be as strong as the schools that educate their children within that given environment.
School and community leadership also requires master's students to develop stronger communication skills that use a wide variety of methods and techniques. The unique atmosphere of a middle school, requires a different sort of communication skills than those working within the general culture or society. It is important for school leaders to step out of their comfort zone and address others in a non-school like fashion. This is helpful for both the individual and the school itself due to the demands on leadership such efforts require.
To accomplish this outcome, an attendance reward initiative was created to help illuminate the program outcome objectives. This program required making purchases of trophies to award to students with high attendance percentages. The community involvement portion of this…
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