Edited By Christina Gitsaki
Part II: Educational Reforms in the Arabian Gulf
ROBIN DADA Chapter 10 Teacher Leadership in the Arab Gulf: Expatriates and Arab Educators Mentor Each Other Abstract Teacher leadership is a part of participatory leadership (Tolbert & Rook, 2005) and the maximization of educator teams in schools. This chapter reports on the results of a qualitative study into the attributes and roles of teacher leaders and the interplay of bureaucratic and organic leadership systems in Arab schools. Eleven middle level (Grades 6-9) teacher leaders in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) were the key informants in the study, with data drawn from teachers and principals. The data collection included their weekly reports about their work, as well as the field notebook of conversations with principals and teachers kept by the Academic Program Coordinator for the Middle Schools (the researcher), all of whom were a part of a systemic school reform program in the UAE entitled Madares al Ghad (Schools of Tomorrow). The results describe the attributes of good teacher leaders as strong relationship builders and listeners, both by the teacher leaders and their principals and colleagues. The most important role identified by teacher leaders was the responsibility for professional development experiences. More difficult roles for the teacher leaders included the scheduling of these experiences. Obstacles to the role included the random scheduling patterns, absenteeism, and sporadic Internet connectivity in some schools. Commitment to and support of teacher development by the principals was an asset to the teacher leadership role. The interplay 206 Robin Dada between the organic nature of teacher leadership...
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