Titel: Rektors pedagogiska ledarskap - en kritisk policyanalys/Principal's pedagogical leadership - a critical policy analysis
Fakultet: Fakulteten för samhällsvetenskap
Datum: 11 januari 2019, kl. 10.00
Plats: sal Weber, Linnéuniversitetet, campus Växjö
Opponent: prof. Elisabet Nihlfors, Uppsala universitet
Betygsnämnd: prof. Per Gerrevall, Linnéuniversitetet doc Katarina Norberg, Umeå universitet doc Anders Nelson, Högskolan i Halmstad
Ordförande: doc Stephan Rapp, Jönköping University
Handledare: doc Stephan Rapp, Jönköping University
Examinator: prof Per Lindqvist, Linnéuniversitetet
Spikning: 18 december 2018, kl. 13.30 i universitetsbibliotekets foajé, Växjö
The pedagogical leadership is regarded as the most significant of the principal ́s duties. Because there is no clear definition of pedagogical leadership as a concept, it may be difficult for the principal to know how to practice it. Various versions of the concept’s meaning are currently circulating, in turn offering different norms to relate to and act upon. This doctoral thesis takes its point of departure from the policy proposal of a Rektorslyft in the Swedish national budget of 2011, as a solution to the problem that principals were not considered to be good enough pedagogical leaders. The study is designed as a critical policy analysis, with a curriculum theory framework and a critical interpretative perspective. The critical approach is directing focus towards the steering of the school. Further, a poststructuralist perspective adds a discursive approach to the study. The empirical material consists of a selection of official education policy documents, mainly governmental official reports.
The aim of the study is to examine and analyse how the pedagogical leader is discursively constructed in official education government documents, what changes and stabilities can be distinguished in these discursive constructions over time and how these can be understood and explained. Bacchi ́s WPR-method and Foucault ́s genealogy is used as a methodological framework for the text analysis.
The result shows six discursive breakpoints in the construction of the pedagogical leader from the 1950s to 2010s. These breakpoints have a close relationship to changes in school steering. Principals’ pedagogical leadership can therefore be regarded as a policy to legitimise new steering reforms. The result further indicates that principals from the 1950s to 2010s were given a clearer personal responsibility within the pedagogical leadership. The changes identified through the critical policy analysis can be explained by the context and policy streams.
The text analysis also indicated stabilities in the discursive construction of the pedagogical leader. These stabilities can be explained by traditions and school structures. Hopefully, this study has contributed to a better and deepened understanding of principals’ pedagogical leadership, as well as have given the concept an empirical and theoretical basis.