Although we all know what the definition of the words “education” and “leadership”, many are completely baffled by the term educational leadership. Its definition is pretty much what the words say. Education leadership is the process of combining the talents of all involved to improve the education system. Educational leadership is also a field of study for individuals who aspire to make a career out of improving the education and school systems.
Educational leadership is the process of combining the forces and talents of students, teachers and parents with the goal of improving the quality of education and the education system. The main purpose of educational leadership is to ensure academic success through material and training improvements. This success is achieved by the joint collaboration of all the people involved in the education system, including teachers, students, parents, the policymakers and even the public.
From a business standpoint, education leadership is a combination of quality control and academic management. The main contributors to education leadership are the teachers because they not only manage the students but also are leaders among their colleagues by providing them with important education management and teaching materials. Teachers also provide their feedback to other leaders in an attempt to improve on curriculums and teaching methods in general.
Education leadership programs are offered at various degree levels and also through various educational programs depending on the candidate’s career goals. Some examples of educational leadership programs include:
- Bachelor of Science in Education
- Bachelor of Science in Teaching
- Master of Education
- Master of Science in Education with a concentration in Education Leadership
- Master of Science in Education Leadership
- Doctor of Education Leadership
Main Elements of Education Leadership
Education leadership is much more than just taking on an educational leadership position like becoming a teacher. Education leadership consists of the following parts:
- Lifelong learning – Education leadership is a lifelong process that has those involved working together for many years. A student will interact with the same education leaders throughout his school years.
- Many experiences – Education leadership includes experiential learning, which means that everyone involved in the process must contribute and bring their knowledge and experiences to the table to make it work.
- Inclusivity – This means that the education process should include everyone involved without regard for race, age or ethnicity.
Careers in Educational Leadership
There are various careers for individuals who earn degrees in education or education leadership. While many of the degree programs are aimed at individuals who want careers as teachers other programs are for teachers who want to advance their education and seek leadership roles. Some possible education leadership careers include:
- Elementary, middle or high school teachers
- Assistant Principals
- Athletic Directors
- Lead Teachers
Some of the careers are aimed at individuals who want a hands-on approach to teaching. Other careers are for those who want behind-the-scene education leadership positions where they can have a part in creating or reforming education systems and policies. These individuals can work with lobby groups, advocacy groups or various non-profit organization.
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Candidates who want to really make a difference in the education system are often the ones who pursue this career. Elementary, middle and high school principals are the perfect example of an individual who may be part of the educational leadership field, and the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts these professionals should see good job growth between 2016 and 2026 as well as wages close to $100,000 annually.