Stories of Caring School Leadership
- Mark A. Smylie - University of Illinois at Chicago, USA
- Joseph F. Murphy - Vanderbilt University, Nashville, TN, USA
- Karen Seashore Louis - University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, USA
The practice of caring is essential to effective schooling. Published as a companion to Caring School Leadership, this comprehensive resource of powerful, real-life stories will make clear the connection between caring leadership and student academic success and well-being. Stories of Caring School Leadership includes a guide for using the stories in self-directed reflection and learning, for educators practicing in schools and professional preparation programs. Readers will find stories that
• will help aspiring and practicing leaders reflect upon and further develop caring as a quality of their leadership
• affirm the importance of caring as a fundamental quality of school leadership
• provide examples of caring school leadership in action that can be analyzed, reflected upon, and used to develop practice
Stories have the power to inform and inspire. The stories in this book are evidence of what is possible when caring leadership is practiced in our schools.
As a teacher and principal for nearly twenty years, I highly recommend this book to all educators needing a return to the well that drew us into the profession in the first place. The premise and stories in the book tap into the common thread that unites all educators but is often overlooked—a care for humanity. Smylie, Murphy, and Louis remind us that an ethos of caring is a resilient, sustainable, effective road to the Rome we seek for our students and communities. The stories in the text are perfect for a mid-afternoon reading with leadership teams, faculty, or pre-service teachers as a way to reground ourselves in the work that ultimately matters most.
Stories of Caring School Leadership centers us in the reality that our most essential and basic need is to feel known and cared for. It is through our connection to each other that we grow and thrive. This book brings years of research on school leadership to life. It serves as a powerful resource for school leaders as they deepen their commitment to foster caring within their schools. Stories move people and without a doubt the readers of this book will be drawn, moved, and compelled to invest again and again in the students, educators, families and communities that they serve.
This book is a treasure trove of meaningful and beautiful stories that illustrate the power of caring between educators, students, and families. The book begins by defining caring in the context of schools, followed by a cogent argument for why we need to understand and practice caring. At the start of each collection of stories, there is a set of focusing questions to deepen the reader’s engagement with and reflection on the stories. This book would be valuable for the preparation of school leaders, as well as for self-study and professional development.
This collection of stories demonstrates the importance of building caring relationships with children and their families in order to create a school culture where learning can take place. You will find examples of how school leaders show students and their families empathy, kindness, and compassion. This book is a must read for educators who want to see the Professional Standards for Educational Leaders brought to life.