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2 Tutorials that teach Shared/Distributed Leadership
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Shared/Distributed Leadership

Shared/Distributed Leadership

Author: Katie Hou

In this lesson, you will learn the concepts of shared leadership.

In this lesson, you will learn how shared leadership is connected to the PLC.

In this lesson, you will understand what shared leadership looks like in a K-12 organization.

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Video Transcription

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Hello, and thank you for joining me for Shared and Distributed Leadership. By the end of today's tutorial, we will be able to answer the following essential questions-- what are the concepts of shared leadership, and why are they important? How does shared leadership connect to the PLC? And what does shared leadership look like in a K-12 organization? So what exactly is shared leadership?

Shared leadership is basically a model where individual members of the team are empowered contributors and decision makers. This is important because team members develop norms and share mission and shared vision. Shared leadership is actually framed my social network theory. And shared leadership is inclusive. It elevates and motivates all members. It requires open and respectful dialogue. So what are the focus areas of shared leadership?

One focus area is ownership-- meaning that the stakeholders in the leadership team take ownership of what's going on. One is learning-- as in we're learning from one another. We're learning from our observations. We're learning from the process. And the other is sharing. We're sharing what we know. We're sharing what works, what doesn't work. And we're all working together towards one common goal.

So let's look at the connection between shared leadership and the professional learning community. Some of the main goals is that we want to create a central purpose, so that the team members can work together to meet the goals and objectives that they've established through their central purpose. It's important to make sure that on a shared or distributed leadership team that all members do have an equal voice, and that they're working towards school improvement, and looking at student achievement, and how to increase that.

So what is an example of shared leadership within a professional learning community? One example of this might be that a school could establish a school improvement team. So within this team, they're setting norms. They're creating a mission. They have a vision, just in hypothetical. This team might collect and review student achievement data and behavioral data from the school. And then, they decide to establish three school-wide goals. Remember, a lot of times, these goals are going to follow the SMART acronym.

And then, within the SMART goals, the team is going to decide who's responsible for what action step. And they're going to regularly check in. And during these check-ins, members are going to offer suggestions, so that the plants can be modified if they need to. And they're going to be reviewing data as the year goes on. They're also going to be conducting observations, and that's going to help collect some data.

And then, these members work collaboratively. Typically with a shared leadership team, they are communicating with the principal. And the team itself is a respected leader in the school. So if you want more information on this, please check out the research of Gary Yuki, and Pearce and Conger, and Heifitz.

So let's reflect. Does your school use shared leadership or a variant? And do you think using shared leadership would be beneficial to your school? Why? Or why not? So today, we answered the following essential questions. What are the concepts of shared leadership? And why are they important? How does shared leadership connect to the PLC? What does shared leadership look like in a K-12 organization?

Now it's your turn to apply what you've learned in this video. The Additional Resources section will be super helpful. This section is designed to help you discover useful ways to apply what you've learned here. Each link includes a brief description, so you can easily target the resources you want. Thank you for joining me, and happy teaching.

Notes on “Shared/Distributed Leadership”


(00:00-00:19) Introduction

(00:20-01:20) What is Shared/Distributed Leadership Theory?

(01:21-01:49) Shared Leadership and the PLC

(01:50-03:58) Example

(03:59-03:27) Reflection

(03:28-03:58) Conclusion


Additional Resources

Strategies for Creating Effective School Leadership Teams

This site provides an overview of shared leadership, a rationale for using shared leadership, and suggestions for establishing shared leadership in your organization.

Professional Learning Committees: Characteristics, Principals, and Teachers

This article provides a comprehensive explanation of the shared leadership required for the sustainability and effective functioning of a Professional Learning Community.