Leadership qualities

KLP book front cover.

Four educational leadership qualities underpin principals’ ability to lead their schools in Aotearoa: manaakitanga, pono, ako, and awhinatanga.

Manaakitanga: Leading with moral purpose

Having a sense of moral purpose and a commitment to improved learning and social outcomes is not just about supporting and guiding students, it also involves a commitment to the professional growth and support of other school leaders and teachers.

Pono: Having self-belief

Pono is about valuing one's self. It includes self-esteem and self-care. It encompasses resilience, wellbeing, and a healthy lifestyle.

Ako: Being a learner

Leaders who take their own learning seriously and keep their own passion for learning alive act as important role models for their schools. Keeping up to date with the evidence for professional leadership in schools is a fundamental expectation of principals and leaders who aspire to principalship.

Awhinatanga: Guiding and supporting

Awhinatanga is about having empathy with groups and individuals in the school community. By being able to appreciate the point of view of others, leaders can help build a strong learning culture.

Reflecting on leadership

Educational leaders talk about what leadership means to them.

Realisations about leadership

Educational leaders talk about things they learned about leadership.

Māori women's perspectives of leadership and wellbeing

This article reports the perspectives of five Māori women leaders and relates them to five whakataukī.