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Instructional Leadership Styles

Instructional leaders operate within their school situations with a wide variety of styles. Goleman (2000) identified six leadership styles:

  • Coercive—I demand absolute compliance.—Do what you are told.
  • Authoritative—We are all working toward this vision.—Follow me.
  • Affiliative—I want us all in agreement; our relationships are important.—You are the priority.
  • Democratic—I want a consensus on topics.—What do each of you think?
  • Pace-Setting—I set high standards for performance, for myself, and for all of you.—See me, do the same thing, and get going now.
  • Coaching—A leader develops sustainability for the future.—How about we try this? (p.82–83)

Which style do you see present in your school?

Despite this wide variety, there are knowledge nuggets that need to be present with all instructional leaders. Take a look at Everything Secondary Administrators Need to Know, but Are Afraid to Ask: Understanding the Pragmatic Adolescent Literacy Planning (2004).

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