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Foxes vs hedgehogs: 7 evidence-based leadership tips for headteachers

Is your school full of hedgehogs or foxes? Hedgehogs are people who are committed to certain ideas, and will stick with them even when they've been shown to fail. Foxes are people know lots about everything, but not everything about anything – they are pragmatic, prone to self-doubt and willing to admit when they are wrong. In his 2005 study Expert...
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‘My students don’t care that I am a woman teaching a ‘male’ subject – I wish other people would follow their example’

I recently taught a PSHE lesson to a year 8 group on the assumptions we make about people. I started with the word "Australian" – students said common judgements were that they would say "g'day", wear cork hats, like beer, wear shorts, have barbecues all the time and be good at rugby. Then we moved on to "American" – apparently they like burgers, a...
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A beginner’s guide to Doctor Gary Jones

Best known for: Jones is an advocate of evidence-based educational leadership and management. His blog, Evidence Based Educational Leadership , explores how educators can use research more in their practice, and the pedagogical implications in doing so. In 2016 he published an online handbook for teachers and school leaders on the best uses of evid...
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Should headteachers and school leaders maintain a teaching commitment?

A recent Twitter conversation about the advantages and disadvantages of headteachers having a teaching commitment made me thoughtful. I was a head for 30 years and taught each class of year 7 one English lesson every week throughout this time. I was paired with the English teacher who taught them for the rest of the time. If I had to be out of...
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Of leaders and leadership: the variety of types and their impact

It's a widely recognised fact that the quality of our schools, our teachers and leaders varies too much. Good leaders are proven to transform schools and so demand for top 'superheads' has soared, leading to salaries that are nothing short of eye-watering.  But the latest research, hot off the press from the Centre for High Performance, throws...
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