Ethical blind spots in leading for learning: An Australian study

Journal article


Bezzina, Michael. (2013). Ethical blind spots in leading for learning: An Australian study. Journal of Educational Administration. 51(5), pp. 638 - 654. https://doi.org/10.1108/JEA-09-2011-0075
AuthorsBezzina, Michael
Abstract

Purpose: This study aims to explore the dynamics by which exposure to a moral rationale is given expression in schools, and how this is perceived as impacting on teaching, leadership practice and student outcomes.

Design/methodology/approach: A total of 11 Australian schools were part of a project in which they were supported in applying a conceptual framework involving moral purpose, learning and leadership to self‐selected improvement initiatives. Extensive focus group interviews with the school project teams were analysed to identify recurrent themes, and to illustrate the dynamics of engagement with moral purpose.

Findings: A significant insight that emerges from this study is that the movement towards increased moral sensitivity enhanced commitment to shared purpose. This movement provided a driver for ethically driven behavior. Part of the contribution of the intervention was to draw attention to these elements of moral purpose, which, in turn, increased teacher and leader sensitivity to their operation, and resulted in changed teacher practice and enhanced learning outcomes for students.

Practical implications: The findings of this study highlight the potential of explicit attention to moral purpose in school communities, and suggest some points of emphasis for school leaders who are committed to improvement built on staff commitment.

Originality/value: While many authors signal as a matter of principle the importance of moral purpose in schooling, and in the leadership of change, it is a comparatively under‐researched area in terms of its practical application. This study makes a contribution to addressing that gap.

Keywordsauthentic learning; moral purpose; ethical leadership; shared purpose; learning; ethics; Australia
Year2013
JournalJournal of Educational Administration
Journal citation51 (5), pp. 638 - 654
PublisherEmerald Publishing Limited
ISSN0957-8234
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.1108/JEA-09-2011-0075
Scopus EID2-s2.0-84880147619
Page range638 - 654
Research GroupSchool of Education
Publisher's version
File Access Level
Controlled
Place of publicationUnited Kingdom
Permalink -

https://acuresearchbank.acu.edu.au/item/8qyz3/ethical-blind-spots-in-leading-for-learning-an-australian-study

Restricted files

Publisher's version

  • 13
    total views
  • 0
    total downloads
  • 0
    views this month
  • 0
    downloads this month
These values are for the period from 19th October 2020, when this repository was created.

Export as

Related outputs

Cultivating an ethical school
Starratt, Robert J. and Bezzina, Michael. (2012). Cultivating an ethical school. In pp. 141 - 156 Routledge.
Face to Face Encounters: Education and Engagement for a Shared Humanity
Steel, Anthony, Butcher, Jude and Bezzina, Michael. (2012). Face to Face Encounters: Education and Engagement for a Shared Humanity. Journal of Intercultural Communication.
It's a long way to the top: Informing leadership development programs for aspiring principals
Bezzina, Michael. (2012). It's a long way to the top: Informing leadership development programs for aspiring principals. Leading and Managing - Journal of the Australian Council for Educational Leader. 18(1), pp. 19 - 30.
Paying attention to moral purpose in leading learning: Lessons from the leaders transforming learning and learners project
Bezzina, Michael. (2012). Paying attention to moral purpose in leading learning: Lessons from the leaders transforming learning and learners project. Educational Management, Administration & Leadership. 40(2), pp. 248 - 271. https://doi.org/10.1177/1741143211427979
Transformational partnerships: A new agenda for higher education
Butcher, Jude, Bezzina, Michael and Moran, Wendy. (2011). Transformational partnerships: A new agenda for higher education. Innovative Higher Education. 36(1), pp. 29 - 40. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10755-010-9155-7
Paying attention to moral purpose in Catholic schools :lessons from Leaders Transforming Learning and Learners
Bezzina, Michael. (2010). Paying attention to moral purpose in Catholic schools :lessons from Leaders Transforming Learning and Learners. A beacon of hope: A light for the future. Proceedings of the 2010, 5th International Conference on Catholic Education Leadership. Australia: Australian Catholic University. pp. 3 - 31
Leadership engagement: Some lessons from case studies
Jackson, Ian and Bezzina, Michael. (2010). Leadership engagement: Some lessons from case studies. Leading and Managing - Journal of the Australian Council for Educational Leader. 16(2), pp. 30 - 45.
Prophets of a future not our own: Hope and Catholic educational leadership
Bezzina, Michael. (2010). Prophets of a future not our own: Hope and Catholic educational leadership. Journal of Catholic School Studies. 82(2), pp. 3 - 12.
Catholic educational leadership :A beacon of hope and a light for the future
Bezzina, Michael. (2010). Catholic educational leadership :A beacon of hope and a light for the future. Australia: Australian Catholic University. pp. 1 - 13
Leaders transforming learning and learners: an Australian innovation in leadership, learning and moral purpose
Bezzina, Michael and Burford, Charles. (2010). Leaders transforming learning and learners: an Australian innovation in leadership, learning and moral purpose. In Global perspectives on educational leadership reform: the development and preparation of leaders of learning and learners of leadership pp. 265 - 283 Emerald Group Publishing Ltd.
Pragmatics, politics and moral purpose: the quest for an authentic national curriculum
Bezzina, Michael, Starratt, Robert and Burford, Charles. (2009). Pragmatics, politics and moral purpose: the quest for an authentic national curriculum. Journal of Educational Administration.
Both 'catholic' and 'school': Leading learning with moral purpose
Bezzina, Michael. (2008). Both 'catholic' and 'school': Leading learning with moral purpose. In In A. Benjamin and D. Riley (Ed.). Catholic Schools: Hope in Uncertain Times pp. 220 - 233 John Garrett Publishing.
Catholic schools: Places of conversion or just for the converted?
Bezzina, Michael. (2008). Catholic schools: Places of conversion or just for the converted? Journal of Catholic School Studies. 80(1), pp. 85 - 94.
We do make a difference: Shared moral purpose and shared leadership in the pursuit of learning
Bezzina, Michael. (2008). We do make a difference: Shared moral purpose and shared leadership in the pursuit of learning. Leading and Managing - Journal of the Australian Council for Educational Leader. 14(1), pp. 38 - 59.
The bigger picture and the greater good: Leadership development activities in Catholic systems in NSW
Bezzina, Michael. (2007). The bigger picture and the greater good: Leadership development activities in Catholic systems in NSW. Journal of Catholic School Studies. 78(1), pp. 20 - 29.
Leaders Transforming Learning and Learners :Messages for Catholic Leaders
Bezzina, Michael, Duignan, Patrick Augustine and Burford, Charles. (2007). Leaders Transforming Learning and Learners :Messages for Catholic Leaders. In Tony d'Arbon (Ed.). Directions for Catholic Educational Leadership in the 21st Century: The vision, challenges and reality: Proceedings of the 2007 International Conference on Catholic Educational leadership. Sydney, Australia: Australian Catholic University.