Leading cultural change

Leading cultural change involves an understanding of leadership skills and an appreciation of the development of cultures in a school setting.

New Zealand articles and resources

Professional learning: leading culture

This excellent seven-page resource is useful as a discussion document for leadership teams who are inquiring into the structures and approaches they have for teacher professional learning and development.

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Creating and maintaining school cultures in times of change

by Chris Callaghan

This piece of research describes interviews with several Christchurch principals as they created and maintained school cultures during the Canterbury earthquakes. The implications apply to any school going through major change.

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Thinking About principalship

by David Stewart

In this article, David Stewart overviews the work of a number of theorists who argue that successful leadership stems from a particular form of school culture – one where schools are perceived as 'communities' rather than 'organisations'.

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New Zealand school stories

Noema Williams, Te Kura Kaupapa Māori o Kaikohe.

Te Kura Kaupapa Māori o Kaikohe

Noema Williams discusses building on a whānau/marae model.

Bruce McDonald, Kenakena School.

Kenakena School

Bruce McDonald discusses bringing the focus of the school back to curriculum.

Debbie Marshall-Lobb, Te Kura Kaupapa o Māori Manawatu.

Te Kura Kaupapa o Māori Manawatu

Debbie Marshall-Lobb discusses how relationships are everything and how the principal plays a really powerful role in terms of shaping culture.

Juliet Small, Oranga School.

Oranga School

Juliet Small discusses the school's plan to increase teachers' knowledge of Pasifika cultures to better meet the needs of their students. 

Karen Johansen, Gisborne Girls High School.

Gisborne Girls High School

Gisborne Girls High school is part of a local, a national, and an international community. Karen Johansen feels celebrating success is an integral part of the school culture.

Linda Tame, Lincoln High School.

Lincoln High School

Linda Tame has discovered the power of teacher learning. The staff and the students realise that learning at Lincoln High School is changing.

Malcolm Dixon, Frimley School.

Frimley School

Malcolm Dixon shares his ideas for building a culture of success through teacher professional growth and digital technologies.

Maureen Kerr, St Patrick's School, Kaiapoi.

St Patrick's School, Kaiapoi

Maureen Kerr discusses developing a collaborative school culture that is 'alive'. 

Mike Sutton, Nawton School.

Nawton School

Mike Sutton talks about creating a culture of positive teaching and learning and becoming a professional learning community.

Shona Oliver, Ashhurst School.

Ashhurst School

Shona Oliver discusses leading people and building community relationships.

Other resources

Making progress possible

by Michael Fullan

Michael Fullan talks about the roles of intrinsic motivation, internal accountability and ‘freedom to’ in school change. He also talks about new ways of spreading change and success.

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Culture shift doesn’t occur overnight

by Rick DuFour

In this commentary, Rick DuFour examines an area currently under close scrutiny in New Zealand: the impact that teacher practices have on student learning. He asks, “What happens in our schools when, despite our best efforts in the classroom, a student does not learn?”

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