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Leading Adult Learning
Supporting Adult Development in Our Schools



September 2009 | 368 pages | Corwin
'Eleanor Drago-Severson takes hold of an important and neglected truth: students grow best in schools where the adults around them are growing, too. In this nurturing and much-anticipated work, the author shows us exactly how to make this happen. Sound theory, vivid examples, and, best of all, a practice-ready framework—it's all here! Anyone who cares about making our schools better will feel richly rewarded for spending time with this encouraging book' - Robert Kegan, Meehan Professor of Adult Learning and Professional Development

Harvard University Graduate School of Education, Coauthor of Immunity to Change

'With this comprehensive and compelling book, Eleanor Drago-Severson establishes herself as a leading authority on authoritative leadership in education' - Howard Gardner, Author of Leading Minds

Support the growth and development of all adults—teachers, principals, and superintendents—in your school community!

Educators at every level go through different stages of development over the course of their lives and need different kinds of supports and challenges to grow. Leading Adult Learning introduces a model of adult development that helps school and district leaders consciously cultivate teacher, head teacher, and education officer capacities in the educational workplace.

Eleanor Drago-Severson's developmental model of learning-oriented school leadership draws from multiple knowledge domains, including adult learning, developmental theory, leadership practice, and organizational collaboration. The book shows head teachers how to foster growth and learning for individuals with different needs and developmental orientations. With a focus on research and application, this volume:

- Details four Pillar Practices for growth—teaming, providing leadership roles, collegial inquiry, and mentoring—which can support all adults

- Presents extensive research and practical application from head teachers, teachers, Education Officers, and other school leaders from across the nation

- Includes application exercises, reflective questions, and lessons from the field to assist you in applying this learning-oriented model to your school and school system

Drago-Severson makes a compelling case for deliberately supporting adult development within and across school systems to enhance adults' capacities, school improvement, and student achievement.

 
Preface
 
Acknowledgments
 
About the Author
 
Part 1. Foundations
 
1. A New Model of Leadership for Adult Growth and Learning
In This Chapter

 
Meeting Adaptive Challenges

 
The Need for a New Model of Leadership

 
Supporting Learning Across the System

 
Re-envisioning Staff Development

 
The Research Informing This Book

 
A New Learning-Oriented Model of School Leadership

 
Organization of the Book

 
Summary and Conclusion

 
Reflective Questions

 
 
2. How Constructive-Developmental Theory Informs the Pillar Practices
Why Constructive-Developmental Theory?

 
Informational Learning vs Transformational Learning

 
Constructive-Developmental Theory: An Introduction

 
Why Ways of Knowing Matter When Supporting Adult Growth

 
Shaping School Cultures: Noble Expectations and Hidden Developmental Demands

 
The Holding Environment and Why It Matters in Schools

 
The Learning-Oriented Leadership Model

 
Chapter Summary

 
Frequently Asked Questions

 
Application Exercise

 
Reflective Questions

 
 
Part 2. Pillar Practices for Growth
 
3. Teaming: Growth Opportunities for Individuals, Organizations, and Systems
About Effective Teaming and Its Value

 
Key Elements of Successful Teaming

 
The Team as a Source of Individual Growth and Development

 
Why and How School Leaders Employ Teaming

 
Team Structures That Nurture Adult Development

 
Implementing Teaming: Lessons From the Field

 
Chapter Summary

 
Frequently Asked Questions

 
Application Exercise

 
Reflective Questions

 
 
4. Providing Leadership Roles: Learning and Growing From Leading Together
About Providing Leadership Roles

 
Developmental Benefits of Providing Leadership Roles

 
Examples of School Leaders? Use of Providing Leadership Roles

 
Cases and Lessons From the Field

 
Chapter Summary

 
Reflective Questions

 
 
5. Collegial Inquiry: Engaging in Shared Dialogue and Reflection on Practice
Collegial Inquiry: A Kind of Reflective Practice

 
Collaborative Cultures

 
How Collegial Inquiry Attends to Developmental Diversity

 
Why and How School Leaders Employ Collegial Inquiry

 
Practices School Leaders Use to Initiate Collegial Inquiry

 
Case Study: One Principal?s ?Rare and Unique Opportunity? to Engage in Reflective Practice Over Time

 
Convenings: Personal Case-Based Discussions That Support Collegial Inquiry

 
Chapter Summary

 
Application Exercises

 
Reflective Questions

 
 
6. Mentoring: Building Meaningful and Growth-Enhancing Relationships
About Effective Mentoring and Its Value

 
Mentoring and Developmental Diversity

 
Implications: How Our Way of Knowing Influences the Way We Mentor

 
Why and How School Leaders Employ Mentoring

 
An Example of a Mentoring Program: Lessons From the Field

 
A Protocol for Mentoring Relationships That Nurture Adult Development

 
Chapter Summary

 
Application Exercise

 
Reflective Questions

 
 
7. Implementing the Pillar Practices: Cases From the Field
Case 1: Mentoring Principals and Assistant Principals

 
Case 2: Coaching School Leaders

 
Case 3: Leading Teachers by Listening

 
Case 4: Supporting Adult Development Through Schoolwide Transformation

 
Case 5: The Pillar Practices, Hawaiian Style

 
Chapter Summary

 
Application Exercise

 
Reflective Questions

 
 
8. The School as Learning Center: Stepping Forward With Hope
Meeting Adaptive Challenges by Building Developmental Capacity

 
The Promise of Building Schools as Learning Centers

 
Implications of the New Learning-Oriented Leadership Model

 
Attending to and Valuing Adults? Ways of Knowing

 
Putting the New Learning-Oriented Model Into Practice

 
Stepping Forward

 
On the Gift of Giving

 
 
Research Appendix
 
Glossary
 
Endnotes
 
References
 
Index

“With this comprehensive and compelling book, Eleanor Drago-Severson establishes herself as a leading expert on authoritative leadership in education.”

Howard Gardner, Author of Leading Minds

"As complete a primer for leading adult learning as can be found in print today. Each chapter includes cases and lessons from the field and reflective questions. Eleanor Drago-Severson combines research and practice to create an essential handbook for leaders of adults."

The School Administrator Magazine, January 2011

“Eleanor Drago-Severson takes hold of an important and neglected truth: students grow best in schools where the adults around them are growing, too. In this nurturing and much-anticipated work, the author shows us exactly how to make this happen. Sound theory, vivid examples, and a practice-ready framework—it’s all here! Anyone who cares about making our schools better will feel richly rewarded for spending time with this encouraging book.”

Robert Kegan, Meehan Professor of Adult Learning and Professional Development
Harvard University Graduate School of Education

"There is no greater opportunity for improving public education than to make schools places where adults learn and lead together. In her rich and engaging book, Drago-Severson explores the challenge of this important work and shows us how success is both possible and deeply rewarding."

Susan Moore Johnson, Pforzheimer Professor of Teaching and Learning
Harvard Graduate School of Education

"Building on the 'pillar practices' of her earlier work and animated with stories, exercises, and illustrations, this book offers both lucid explication of the powerful insights of constructive developmental theory and intensely practical partnership in how to put it all to work on Monday morning. In these hard times, this is a welcome and hopeful blueprint for the reanimation of our schools and the transformation of our communities."

Laurent A. Parks Daloz, Senior Fellow
The Whidbey Institute

Easy to read, coverage met my course objectives, students found it helpful

Dr Jill Lynch
Teacher Education Dept, Ashland University
October 25, 2012

The Malcolm Knowles classic text is more appropriate for our course.

Ms Lori Newman
Education , Shapiro Institute for Education and Research at Harvard Medical School and BIDMC
February 21, 2012

Sample Materials & Chapters

Preface

Chapter 1


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