Are Teachers Leaders in Education? #Edchat Summary

6pm CET/ 12pm EST Edchat Summary

In this week’s Edchat we tried tackling this difficult question, “Are teachers leaders in education? Should real change involve teachers or those that have “real power” such as Administrators?”

Although many agreed changed was needed in schools across the world, we came up with many different conclusions on where this change should begin.

What some #edchat participants had to say…

j_allen I think change has to involve teachers…they need to buy in for it to be legit
WPrettyman First time: Don’t teachers have “real power” with students?
dlourcey For real change, to change a culture, it has to happen at the model in chief level. Admin must lead and learn.
johnmclear A good leader will inspire teachers to lead their own dept decision making processes
ShellTerrell Are teachers leaders in education? I would say definitely but they need support of parents, admin, students
Tamaslorincz Good evening from Dubai. I think admin know how to run an institution but know little about education, they need teachers.
cybraryman1 Unfortunately many admin & upper level decision makers are too far removed from the classroom.
fernandocassola Leadership should be shared by both, because som things need to be worked by admin and others by teachers and dont forget students..
nashworld In our district, admin directly supports “middle level leaders” in a leadership symposium of teachers who naturally lead by actions
olafelch @WPrettyman The smart answer would be, “yes, if the students let you!” ;o)
dlourcey Absolutely agree. Teacher leaders are the movers and the shakers. The early adopters will help influence the naysayers
MatthiasHeil Admins are good admins if they stand in bad teachers’ way…
MissCheska Teachers as leaders in Edu? Yes, they are the ones in the classrooms; they know what works/what doesn’t
foes4sports Ideally, real change involves both, but if your admin. isn’t techy, you don’t have any choice but to push for change personally.
olafelch @aeringuy Then why is change / modernisation in teaching so slow?
WPrettyman @olafelch Granted! Good Admins will teach through their own ways of interacting with students and faculty.
elanaleoni I’ve seen change happen from the bottom up, starting with parents and also from the top down w/ admins. (Depends on the culture)
MissCheska Who says there must only be one body of leaders in Edu? Structure of edu relies on collab b/w all parties involved
raffelsol Teachers that lead the change are those that — USE technology OUTSIDE of school and see the impact on their lives.
esolcourses IMO, impossible to implement real change without admin involved. IME, getting them on board isn’t always easy
dlourcey Teachers who are less comfortable need to get in the sandbox, play, get dirt, mess it up, and relearn.
elanaleoni Yes, if you get a groundswell of movement around it, anything’s possible.
olafelch @esolcourses I agree. But progressive admins also have problems getting teachers on board. It cuts both ways.
cybraryman1 You cannot leave out student and parent input into these changes.
esolcourses getting admin to shift their viewpoint can be a problem. Esp. with subjects traditionally taught without using tech
MissCheska Good admins give their teachers room to grow and lead, but give the support they need to be successful in all they do
ToughLoveforX Are teachers leaders in education? || Yes in discovering what works. But for sustainable change, it must be admins.
daylynn Teacher leader has ability to guide admin to approp tools/methods & show how successful & relevant.
tomwhitby system makes too simple for Admins & Teachers to develop an “us & them” mentality that hampers cooperation/ collaboration.
MrR0g3rs all r impt, but if u don’t get the admin, u might as well bang wall w/head
Mattguthrie Teachers have to innovate & admin sometimes necessary to make it policy on schook level to drag along resistors/late adopters
rliberni @tomwhitby here schools expect new teachers to have a view at least on tech
infodivabronx Do the research, start w/ a small pilot project, gather data, and get admin to buy in. No small task

Some questions & points that arose:

ShellTerrell If admin’s vision is different than the teacher’s vision, is real change realistic?
elanaleoni Q: How many of you can say that you have a close relationship with your admins?
olafelch Then why is change / modernisation in teaching so slow?
tomwhitby Do educators defeat themselves by trying to involve everyone in decision making?
MissCheska @dlourcey What kind of incentives would admins enforce to get less comf teachers on board??
reportertanya Does real change have to mean technology, though?
fernandocassola Don’t you think that the community needs to be involved in the school planning / admin? It makes sense or not?
olafelch the question I hear most often from Admin is, how are you going to get the staff to use it?
foes4sports Perhaps we need to consider this: Is it STUDENTS that lead the change?!
dlourcey How does this change take place if teachers have the attitude, “just leave me alone and let me teach?”

Links that were shared:

nashworld Teacher leaders can effectively tap on admin shoulders by the use of open media. Example: http://twurl.nl/g7zwus
nashworld Again… skip down to “administrative support” on this post for my opinions on this: http://twurl.nl/ybv26j
fernandocassola I thnk the model of leadership proposed by the school2.0 is the most fantastic method of teaching. see this http://bit.ly/4Qmccd
Note: Read the entire transcript by clicking on @jswiatek’s archive

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