Democratic Ethical Educational Leadership : Reclaiming School Reform book cover
1st Edition

Democratic Ethical Educational Leadership
Reclaiming School Reform

ISBN 9780415839556
Published August 18, 2015 by Routledge
180 Pages

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Book Description

A democratic, ethical leader integrates democracy, social justice, and school reform through dialogue and is guided by a sense of responsibility to students, families, and the community. Democratic Ethical Educational Leadership presents a cohesive framework for aspiring and practicing leaders to explore the complex nature of leadership that can support democratic citizenry and social responsibility.

Organized around the 5 "New DEEL" visions for leadership, chapters illustrate real people who embody these principles. This compelling vision for educational leadership, combined with diverse and vibrant examples of leadership in action, will serve as a critical guide for the rising generation of democratic ethical educational leaders in the US and abroad. Presenting contextualized, practical instances of this approach to leadership, this book will inspire educational leaders to reflect upon their practice and reach their potential as democratic leaders.

Special Features Include:

  • A unique framework to guide responsible, ethical leadership in today’s schools.
  • A series of case studies help readers identify key leadership qualities in context from which to illuminate their own emerging practice. 
  • End-of-chapter questions encourage exploration of leaders’ motivations, processes, strategies, and lessons learned.

Table of Contents



Chapter 1: Introduction

Section One: Responsibility

Chapter 2: Maintaining a Commitment to Democracy (in spite of High Stake Standardized Testing)

Donnan Stoicovy

Chapter 3: A Leader Embodied Ethics, Equitable Policies, and a Community of Care

Judith Aiken, Cynthia Gerstl-Pepin, and Jill Mattuck Tarule

Chapter 4: A Co-operative Response to Entrepreneurial and Competitive Pressures

Philip A. Woods

Chapter 5: The Transformational Leader as a Thought Criminal

Fenwick W. English

Section Two: Community-Building Leaders amidst Turbulence

Chapter 6: The Importance of Building Community: A Preschool Director's Experiences on 9/11/01

Susan Shapiro

Chapter 7: The Transformation of a School District from Energy Hog to Energy Star

Lisa Kensler and Cynthia Uline

Chapter 8: On Leadership for Community Schooling

Peter V. Lisenfeld and William C. Frick

Chapter 9: How Turbulence Can Be Used to Shield or Facilitate Change: A Dean’s Experience

Barbara S. Di Toro

Section Three: Democracy, Social Justice, and School Reform

Chapter 10: Sturm und Drang: Building "The Most Elegant Financing System in the Country."

William J. Mathis

Chapter 11: Rebecca Davis: Using the Arts to Make People Think and Remember Issues of Global Sustenance

Joseph Polizzi

Chapter 12: Student Voice in School Reform: The Madison High School Youth Governance Model

Marc Brasof

Chapter 13: Daanaa Abdullah: Exemplar of Community Leadership

Quisar Abdullah

Section Four: Ethical Decision-Making

Chapter 14: Rachel’s Challenge: A Caring Connection

Lynne Blair

Chapter 15: Reclaiming School Reform from Duty to Care

Valerie A. Storey

Chapter 16: The Limits of a Single Candle

Patricia A.L. Ehrensal

Chapter 17: Mr. Murray vs. Merit Pay

Peter Brigg

Section Five: Career as a Calling

Chapter 18: Moral Courage of Viktor E. Frankl: An Exemplary Leader

Anthony H. Normore and Jeffrey S. Brooks

Chapter 19: A Question of resources: How Should Public Education Funds Be Spent?

Marla Israel

Chapter 20: In Search of Seamless Education

Christopher M. Branson, Michele Morrison, and Rachel McNae

Chapter 21: A Bullied Boy Who Grew Up to Change School Climate

Roger Barascout

Conclusion: Sharing Values, Theories, Praxis, Curriculum and Pedagogy

Contributor Biographies


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Steven Jay Gross is Professor of Educational Leadership at the College of Education, Temple University, USA, and Founding Director of the New DEEL Community Network. 

Joan Poliner Shapiro is Professor of Higher Education at the College of Education, Temple University, USA, and Co-Director of the New DEEL Community Network.


"This book is a powerful example of how a committed group of scholars can explore, advocate, and illustrate what democratic, ethical educational leadership means for students, teachers, leaders, and communities. I cannot imagine a more relevant and powerful response to our time; these editors and authors help us to ‘reclaim educational reform by advocating democratic, ethical educational leadership.’"

--Gary M. Crow, Professor of Educational Leadership, Indiana University

"This book is for anyone who is concerned about the moral aims of education today. With stories about inspired, ethical, democratic and courageous leaders, Gross and Shapiro remind us that doing the right thing as a leader is always a choice, regardless of circumstances or conditions. This book challenges readers to reassess what we may believe to be insurmountable obstacles to inclusive, ethical, caring, and socially just leadership practices in today's schools. Gross and Shapiro offer new hope to all leaders who struggle to do the right thing in education."

--Colleen L. Larson, Chair of the Department of Administration of Leadership and Technology and Associate Professor of Educational Administration, NYU Steinhardt School of Culture, Education and Human Development