Three Fordham University Graduate School of Education (GSE) professors in the Division of Educational Leadership and Policy Studies presented six papers during the 31st annual University Council for Educational Administration (UCEA) Convention November 15-19, 2017 in Denver, CO. The 2017 convention theme, “Echando Pa’lante: School Leaders (Up)rising as Advocates and (Up)lifting Student Voices”, encouraged opportunities for reflective dialogue regarding the educational contexts that students, teachers, principals, and superintendents will be facing within a changing national climate and its impact on educational policy.
On Friday and Saturday, November 17-18, GSE faculty gave the following presentations:
Dr. Margaret (Terry) Orr, Associate Professor of Education, GSE Educational Leadership, Administration, and Policy division
1) Policy, Evaluation, and Improvement Within Leadership Preparation Programs – International Comparative Analysis of Principal Preparation, Selection, and Evaluation Policies: A 20-Country Study; with Liz Hollingworth, University of Iowa.
Shifting national policy climates around the world have brought renewed attention to the importance of school leadership as a lever to influence educational quality. This paper compared the current policies and practices of a cross-section of 20 countries worldwide and contrasted these with international policy descriptions from 2008. Current U.S. policies were then specifically compared to the 2008 international policies to identify trends and both innovative and restrictive practices (standards and leader expectations) that warrant further examination, particularly in relation to leadership advocacy and community engagement.
2) Assessment and Evaluation of Principals and Preparation Programs – Positive Influence of Performance Assessment on Leadership Preparation Programs: One State’s Experience; with Liz Hollingworth, University of Iowa; Barbara Beaudin, Independent Consultant.
The Performance Assessment for Leaders (PAL) is designed to evaluate school leadership readiness and set expectations for preparation programs. Through two years of survey research with faculty and candidates who completed PAL, the impact PAL has had on preparation programs was examined. Results suggest strong program alignment to PAL tasks and improving preparation and support. Findings support the promise of performance assessments as a tool to support programs and evaluate candidate readiness.
Dr. Elizabeth Leisy Stosich, Assistant Professor, GSE Educational Leadership, Administration, and Policy division:
1) Developing Policy Advocates with Youth, Leaders, and Community – Engaging Diverse Stakeholders in the Policymaking Process: Lessons From California, Iowa, New Hampshire, and Vermont.
The goal of this study was to understand and explain how educational policymakers in four states conceptualized and designed educational policies to create more meaningful and equitable learning opportunities for students, and the role of stakeholder engagement in the policymaking process. Findings suggested that meaningful stakeholder engagement can serve to both strengthen initial policy design and garner support for implementation.
2) Innovative Instructional Leadership – Instructional Leadership Teams in High-Poverty High Schools: Membership Selection, Capacity, and Authority for Leading Educational Change.
This study examined whether and how instructional leadership teams (ILTs) can serve as a structure for improving instruction and student learning in high-poverty high schools. ILTs have the potential to improve educational opportunities for historically underserved students by creating a structure in which teachers and administrators work collaboratively to develop and implement a shared vision and strategy for instructional improvement.
Dr. Tiedan Huang, Assistant Professor, GSE Educational Leadership, Administration and Policy division:
1) Intersections in Educational Leadership Research – Intersectionality in Quantitative Educational Research in Educational Leadership: Theoretical and Methodological Issues.
Rooted in feminist scholarship and critical race theory, intersectionality is a theoretical and analytical approach that simultaneously considers multiple categories of identity and inequality. Intersectionality is slowly evolving as the gold standard multidisciplinary approach for analyzing subjects’ experiences of identity and oppression. This study examined the integration of intersectionality in quantitative educational leadership literature. Specifically, through the lenses of critical realism and critical inquiry, the study illuminated (a) some of the theoretical and methodological issues associated with integrating intersectionality into quantitative research in educational leadership; (b) progress made in addressing some of those issues; and (c) new possibilities and opportunities in promoting intersectional approaches in educational leadership research.
2) Principal Expectations and Student Achievement – The Relationship Among School Context, Principal Time Use, and School Climate.
Principals play critical roles in the development of high-quality schooling experience. While the significance of principal leadership is widely recognized and the impactful behaviors of principals are empirically delineated, little is known about whether principals are spending time in an impactful way, whether principals’ time use varies across different school contexts, or whether principals’ time use affects critical school conditions and outcomes such as school climate and student behaviors that are linked to student academic performance. This study aimed to answer these questions using a large-scale dataset from the Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS).
“These papers represent a small sample of the dynamic work our Educational Leadership faculty are engaged in as they continually strive to understand new approaches to educational policy and practice nationally and worldwide,” stated GSE Dean Virginia Roach. “Our faculty are positively impacting schools and professional practice every day, and most importantly, identifying what works to improve education for all children.”