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Jsl Vol 10-N5

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The Journal of School Leadership is broadening the conversation about schools and leadership and is currently accepting manuscripts. We welcome manuscripts based on cutting-edge research from a wide variety of theoretical perspectives and methodological orientations. The editorial team is particularly interested in working with international authors, authors from traditionally marginalized populations, and in work that is relevant to practitioners around the world. Growing numbers of educators and professors look to the six bimonthly issues to: deal with problems directly related to contemporary school leadership practice teach courses on school leadership and policy use as a quality reference in writing articles about school leadership and improvement.

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4 Articles

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White Racism, Antiracism, and School Leadership Preparation

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MICHELLE D. YOUNG
JULIE LAIBLE

ABSTRACT: This article emerges from a belief that an overwhelming majority of White school leaders do not have a thorough enough understanding of White racism or the ways in which they are perpetuating White racism in their schools, even though most are well-meaning individuals. The lack of understanding or awareness of different forms of racism and how White racism works is highly problematic. Indeed, it has appalling consequences, detrimentally impacting the lives and dreams of millions of children. In this article, we draw from both literature and experience to argue for the incorporation of antiracism in school leadership programs. We begin with the assertion that because Educational Administration programs function as important agents of socialization for our future school leaders, White racism in all its manifestations must be confronted in these programs. After building the case that racism is enacted by teachers and administrators in schools and demonstrating the harmful effects of White racism on both children and adults, we argue that racism is not being adequately addressed in educational administration programs. Subsequently, we offer guidance to our readers for promoting antiracism among future educational leaders.

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Transforming School Culture Through Teaching Teams

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CYNTHIA L. ULINE
JOANN M. BERKOWITZ

ABSTRACT: This study uses the experiences of school restructuring and reform as a context for the study of cultural change and cultural learning. Drawing on theories of organizational culture and cultural change, the article considers a particular school as a culture in transition. Instructional teams are central to the school’s reform efforts and person-to-person relationships are at the heart of shared cultural assumptions. The study explores the impact of changing structures, policies, artifacts, and events in directing cultural change; the central role shared assumptions play within the process; the impact of cultural change on teachers’ images of themselves as teachers; and the role of school leaders in initiating cultural change.

Transforming a school’s culture is no small task. Schein (1992) defines culture as a set of implicit and silent assumptions that cannot change unless they are first brought to the surface and confronted. Hannay and Ross (1997) suggest that changing a school’s culture involves adapting longstanding norms. These norms influence behavior at all levels of school activity. They are the rules for how individuals interact, how priorities are established, even for what is “deemed as the essence of . . . education” at a particular school (p. 589). Furthermore, scholars also tell us that each group within a school—students, teachers, and administrators—share subcultures with different norms (Bidwell, 1965; Cusick, 1973, 1983; Gordon, 1957; Lightfoot, 1983; McLaughlin & Talbert, 1993; Metz, 1978; Sarason, 1971; Waller, 1965). Changes on one front, within one subculture, do not necessarily guarantee corresponding changes on another front within another subculture. The work and dynamics are complicated, requiring patience, diligence, imagination, and courage.

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A Critical Interrogation of Murphy’s Call for a New Center of Gravity in Educational Administration

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FENWICK W. ENGLISH

ABSTRACT: In an invited address at the 1999 annual meeting of AERA, Joseph Murphy called for “a new center of gravity for the profession” of educational administration. This “call” was later issued as a formal publication of the University Council of Educational Administration. This article is a critical appraisal of Murphy’s portrayal and analysis of the state of educational administration.

In an invited address at the 1999 American Educational Research Association (AERA) meeting in Montreal, Canada, Joseph Murphy called for a “new center of gravity” for educational administration. Later, that address was published as a monograph by the University Council for Educational Administration (UCEA; Murphy, 1999). The purpose of this article is to interrogate the call for such a center and explore its hidden meanings, un-stated assumptions, and implications. The Murphy paper and subsequent UCEA monograph are important hallmarks because of who he is as a speaker and advocate, and because of the platform afforded him by AERA and later by UCEA.

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Notes From the Cell: A Response to English’s “Interrogation”

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JOSEPH MURPHY

ABSTRACT: This article is a response to Fenwick English’s review of my 1999 monograph, The Quest for a Center: Notes on the State of the Profession of Educational Leadership. In it, I refute the three central claims made by English: (a) the monograph reinforces the status quo in the profession, (b) it is a call for maintaining professional control, and (c) it is hostile to alternative perspectives in the field.

Let me begin by thanking Fen for his response to my (1999) monograph, The Quest for a Center: Notes on the State of the Profession of Educational Leadership. One of the two objectives of the volume was to build a base for dialogue and action around critical issues in the profession. Fen’s review is an important piece in that dialogue. On a second front, I am grateful to Fen for helping me gain insight into my own analytical sense-making work.

Rather than engage in a point/counterpoint with Fen, after a few introductory comments, I simply address three of Fen’s assertions that are considerably off the mark: (a) that the monograph reinforces the status quo in the profession, (b) that it is a call for maintaining professional control, and (c) that it is hostile to alternative perspectives in the field.

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