A new study has pointed out that good school leadership is imperative to good education.
Researchers Kyla Wahlstrom and Karen Seashore Louis from the University of Minnesota College of Education and Human Development and Kenneth Leithwood and Stephen Anderson from the University of Toronto, have broad implications for the understanding of how leadership affects learning across the United States.
"Leadership is important because it sets the conditions and the expectations in the school that there will be excellent instruction and there will be a culture of ongoing learning for the educators and for the students in the school," said Wahlstrom.
The report Learning from Leadership: Investigating the Links to Improved Student Learning, found that student achievement is higher in schools where principals share leadership with teachers and the community.
Another finding was that districts where levels of student learning are high, district leaders are more likely to emphasize goals and initiatives that reach beyond minimum state expectations for student performance.
There are a few challenges, though, such as - stark lack of district support for principals' professional development, lack of regular contact between most principals and their district office and absence of comprehensive approaches to education reform in most states.
"So leadership absolutely makes a difference. I can't say that strongly enough: Good leadership is critical to good education," said Wahlstrom.