Leadership (3)

Informing School Leadership With Advocacy

Dr Phil Cummins explores how schools can inform school leadership with advocacy for the other.


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The Advocacy of Future Builders

When we build leadership in a school by informing it with advocacy for the other, we co-construct a compelling narrative about the progress of a school from yesterday to today to tomorrow that prepares future builders to help others to interpret and navigate through complexity, particularly through their capacity to communicate.

The advocacy of future builders is the exercise of influence towards the needs of tomorrow’s world. While honouring the past and attending to the urgencies of today, future builders recognise that what they are doing is building legacy:

Leadership is the capacity to direct, motivate, influence, and inspire people to achieve their mission willingly. It is actualised through deliberate, targeted, and intentional action that aligns vision with intention and means. Our leadership should begin with who we are as a person, flow into who we want to become, and be demonstrated through our actions in service of others. It is exercised in relationship with those around us and our environment. It is the articulation of a desire to achieve better outcomes for others through an inside-out process of development that models inquiry for all.

CIRCLE Global Educational Research Program Finding*

What is critical in this is understanding and advocating for the capacity of each in a school community to contribute in this way and, thus, to co-construct the powerful story of the building of this legacy:

I think every single one of us is a leader. Some of us have titles. Some of us don't, but every single one of us is a leader.

Ronni Kahn | Game Changers insight*

Locating Advocacy in School Leadership

Leadership which is informed by the advocacy of future builders tells a joined-up story of the journey that we take from yesterday to today to tomorrow. What does it look like to embed advocacy within school leadership?

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Leading Leadership With Advocacy

Adriano and I describe the development of leadership as future builders that informs school leadership through advocacy for the other like this in our book***:

It’s what we give – the things we pass on to others, the legacy we leave behind – that truly defines our best impact on the world as true servants and stewards of people, place and planet.

Ref: Game Changers: Leading Today's Learning for Tomorrow's World (Amba Press 2023) p.15

A checklist for the work of advocacy as a team leader building leadership might look like the following.

Advocacy as a Team Leader  (1)  (1)

A checklist for the work of advocacy as an organisational leader building leadership might look like the following:

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How do you rate your work as a leader who informs school leadership with advocacy for the other?

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* You can learn more about servant leadership – leadership for the other here: https://www.aschoolfortomorrow.com/game-changers/lead

** You can listen to Ronni Kahn’s Game Changers Episode here: https://podcasts.apple.com/au/podcast/game-changers/id1503430745?i=1000563666493

*** You can purchase your copy of Game Changers: Leading Today’s Learning For Tomorrow’s World (now published by Amba Press) through Amazon here, Barnes and Noble here, and Booktopia here.

Dr Phil Cummins FRSA FACEL FIML is the Managing Partner of a School for tomorrow, Managing Director at CIRCLE – The Centre for Innovation, Research, Creativity & Leadership in Education, Associate Professor of Education & Enterprise at Alphacrucis University College, and co-host of the Game Changers podcast series.

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