The Future of Education

Edition 14

Accepted Abstracts

Features of Instructional School Leadership at the Local Level of Schools’ Governance

Vesna Kovač, University of Rijeka (Croatia)


The purpose of the paper is to present key findings of the empirical study aimed to describe and understand basic features of instructional school leadership (ISL) at the local level of school governance (school founders) in Croatia. ISL refers to the theoretical and practical construct that can be described through a set of roles and tasks of school principals and other stakeholders involved in school leadership, focused on improving a social and academic capacities of students, and professional and intellectual capital of teachers and schools. Basic qualitative interpretative research design has been used for the purpose of data collection and analysis. Data have been collected via written interviews with 84 superintendents and/or other professionals responsible for educational issues from various regional parts of Croatia. Semistructured interview protocol has been used to obtain information about several research topics: features of main tasks and responsibilities of superintendents related to their ISL practice; factors that figure as main facilitators or obstacles for their effective ISL role, and their suggestions for improvements of ISL practice at the local level of school governance. Research results indicate that some of the main issues of ISL at the local level is about improvement of the collaboration between schools and local communities and removing excessive political interference into educational issues.

Keywords: instructional leadership, local level of school governance, superintendents, school principals.


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