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Contested Sites in Education

The Quest for the Public Intellectual, Identity and Service


Edited By Karen Ragoonaden

Emerging from the contested site of a new university campus, educators reflect upon the transformative process of reconceptualising and rebuilding a faculty of education in the twenty-first century. Contested Sites in Education seeks to improve an understanding of and conversations about the nature, meaning and significance of higher education’s public service within the scope of a democratic society. This volume offers educators and students a praxis-oriented, hope-infused, contemplative approach to conceiving, developing and in some cases, returning to public service and public identity in the twenty-first century. Contested Sites in Education will prepare future leaders who thoroughly understand, consciously apply and intentionally use democracy, selfknowledge, cultural knowledge, habits of mind, reflective learning communities and advocacy in their professional lives.
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Chapter Seven: Developing Mindful Teacher Leader Identities in Higher Education


← 94 | 95 → CHAPTER SEVEN

Developing Mindful Teacher Leader Identities in Higher Education


Increasingly, teacher leadership is recognized as an integral element of school reform and school improvement, with recent research suggesting that improving the professional capital in schools through developing the human, social, and professional capital of teachers is the key to transforming teaching in every school (Hargreaves & Fullan, 2012). For the past few decades, there has been a growing interest in researching teacher leadership to understand the different ways and means for teachers to engage as leaders in their classrooms and schools (York-Barr & Duke, 2004). This research is important to understand more fully how to encourage and support teachers in more diverse contexts and settings to take on leadership roles in the school as an opportunity to influence change and school improvement and to create more opportunities for continued personal professional growth in their work.

Teacher leadership is an emerging field of theory, with a clear definition not yet established. As a result, the concept can mean many different things to different people. For some, teacher leadership means taking on formal administrative roles in the school, while for others leading students in the classroom or leading colleagues to implement innovative curriculum and pedagogy defines what it means to be a teacher leader. The ethical and moral dimensions of teacher leadership have not yet garnered much attention, whereas the moral nature of formal leadership in schools has been...

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