Full Question: We are working with principals around instructional leadership. Using two articles, one by you in Education Leadership, and the other by Vivian Robinson, we engaged principals in a discussion of what school leaders do that has the greatest impact on student learning. One idea was the principal spending more time in classrooms (to be able to lead and support the learning of teachers). We would like to know more about what research says about what effective principals do when they walk through classrooms. Is there a resource you can refer us to?
Answer: “Yes, we spend a lot of time on this matter and worth contacting the Osiris people to learn more about what we do. The instructional leader (a la Viviane) spends much time a) making the narrative in the school about the impact of the adults, b) focusing more on the INTERPRETATION and meaning of this impact (and not obsessed with the numbers), c) develops collaborative efficacy and expertise by having the adults work with each other (all kids are owned by no one teacher), and d) given 80+ percent of what happens in a class a teacher does not see or hear then helping teachers ‘see’ their impact – by observation, use of tools like Visible Classroom, etc. It is a powerful way for school leaders to legitimise and improve the impact – even having informed debates about what impact means – what does a year’s growth for a year’s input look like in this schools (compared to like schools) etc.” (John Hattie, personal communication, February 23, 2018).