Course Synopses - Division C - Educational Leadership

This series of courses deals the broader role of the manager as an educational and moral leader, as a curriculum manager and initiator, as an innovator, as the leader of a team of educators, and as an administrator and organizer.

Three required courses - 6 semester credits

1C. Educational leadership: from management to leadership

The course discusses the differences between management and leadership, emphasizing the role of the school principal as an educational leader. Educational leadership in the school setting is synonymous with good teaching. Within the framework of the course we will compare the theories with the latest research in educational leadership. The full range of approaches to the subject of leadership will be presented. Students will analyze processes that lead to the development of leadership qualities and how they are related to transformative leadership. In the latter part of the course the students will discuss the importance of ethics and ideals in the make up of a leader and the impact of cultural and moral qualities on the image of the educational leader.

2C. Leadership in teaching, learning and evaluation: the principal as pedagogic leader

The research literature on school improvement points to the need for direction, guidance, and training to change teaching methods and enhance achievements. Research is an important tool in the processes of change and improvement of teaching methods and this must be understood and realized. It is also important in assisting to create educational leadership that is at the heart of educational activity in the schools. The unique character of this course is its attempt to combine theory and practice. Students will test the latest theories of teacher evaluation and staff development against the reality of present day school practices and routine. The course will provide tools to help the future teachers to initiate processes of growth and innovative pedagogical practices in the schools.

3C. Tools for the development of innovative leadership

A humanistic world outlook and the ability to define goals are necessary but insufficient qualification for school leaders. The school leaders must also possess the skills and abilities to carry out plans and programs in practice, with attention to detail and the readiness to cope with the unexpected. Above all one must have the determination to carry through despite the obstacles. The main objective of this course is to develop in the students, the skills to translate theory into practice. Case studies will be an important part of the learning process.

Two electives from list below - 4 semester credits

4C. Issues in the evaluation of educational initiatives
Pre-requisites: methodology studies

In this course the students will learn advanced methods of evaluation of educational programs and initiatives. The following subjects will be covered: the changing approaches to evaluation in education; evaluation as an integral part of the teaching, guiding and administrative processes. These subjects will be discussed from the operative as well as the critical aspect. The course will focus on evaluation within the school framework and on the position of the principal as critical in making evaluations and drawing from them the necessary conclusions. The course will also show the importance of internal evaluation and on the decisive role of the principal in initiating and supporting internal evaluation. The course will emphasize the importance of internal evaluation for the principal, in regard to making decisions, drawing conclusions, observation and for confronting external groups.

5C. Development of educational leadership - a seminar
Pre-requisites: methodology studies

This course takes as axiomatic the assumption that the managers/school leaders strive to realize the objectives they have set for their organization; that these goals change with time as the organization and its members grow and develop. This course seeks to encourage thought and help students develop ideas and opinions on this subject. We will test together several “visions” of education - democratic, humanistic, and critical approaches - and discuss their significance in relation to the role of the school in society. Later after discussion within the group, students will express their opinions on the social-educational goals of education and develop their own “visions” and systems of values.

6C. Curricula - content, control and changes

This course deals with the official and the hidden curricula and their influence on teaching and learning in the schools. The curriculum is influenced by many factors including the internal politics of the school, the local council, and the ministry of education. These factors often determine the character of the curricula and how they will be taught in the schools. This course emphasizes the importance of the curriculum as the most meaningful tool for teaching and learning in the school framework. The course will demonstrate the importance of pedagogical knowledge as a tool in carrying out the curriculum in a meaningful way.

7C. Guidance, training and management

This course is concerned with the opportunities the principals have to make optimal use of their knowledge of guidance and teaching skills. In defining the principal’s role, we will emphasize guidance and teaching skills that can be so important in working with the teachers and administrative staff, both on a one-to-one basis and as a group.
Within the framework of the course we will clarify basic concepts of guidance, including group guidance and meetings on an individual basis. We will examine the contribution of psychoanalytical theory as well as critical pedagogy and theories of complexity in these encounters. We will see how the principals are able to mix guidance with instruction in their administrative activities, what challenges they face, and how they can really contribute. Together with theoretical discussions on the nature of the principal role, the course will include a practical-experimental workshop in which real situations will be investigated.

 

8C. Field-based management skills educational systems
Pre-requisites: Educational leadership: from management to leadership

The course deals the development of management skills and in the acquisition of practical tools for coping with the problems that arise in the day to day management and leadership of educational frameworks. This course is based on knowledge culled in the field that will be gathered by the students themselves in trips as an integral part of the program. Students will visit an elementary school, a secondary school, and the offices of decision-makers at the local and national level. In this course we will focus on analyzing leadership styles and on identifying the social changes that influence educational policy and organization. The course examines how various leadership styles are enacted in complex situations. The teaching process includes simulation and casting students in various roles to test their grasp of the material presented.

9C. Innovative leadership: challenge and opportunity

This course will focus on the leadership aspects of bringing about change and renewal.
We will investigate what innovating leaders have in common and try to define the characteristics of educational renewal. The theory which we will teach will try to clarify why leaders are needed to champion the cause of new ideas and will try to define the interaction between the individual, the group, the idea and the situation. Within the framework of the course students will learn more about new ideas and revolutionary changes in general and in the educational field in particular. Is the institutional framework of the school conducive to change and new ideas? How does education strike the balance between tradition and innovation? The students are invited to bring to the classroom examples of innovative leaders, to analyze case studies (particularly in the educational sphere) and relevant biographies, and to analyze how these leaders achieved their educational goals.

10C. Ethical aspects of the principal’s work

On the assumption that decisions made on a moral basis are a cardinal factor in the work of the principal, educational leaders must develop the ability to justify their convictions to their colleagues and the public. The objective of the course is to clarify moral thought and induce students to think through the simple principles of morality, for they often prove to be difficult to practice when one is faced with the obstacles in the real world. The course tries to identify the ethical aspect in various situations and help the students see their way clearly in moral dilemmas. During the course various theories will be examined and tested on real examples from problems that face principals in their work in educational institutions such as payments by parents, allocation of resources, opposing interests, choice of educational activities, relations between the principal and the pupils, their parents and the school staff. The subjects will be discussed from the moral perspective.