being more stressed and experiencing more difficulties at work. Teacher leaders' colleagues receive relevant support that encourages professional growth, and teacher leadership contributes significantly to school change, the research found. And of course, personal characteristics play a role.
A negative school climatelike a school for instance, that is resistant to change or doesn't have a unified visionwas also a prohibiting factor. They define teacher leaders as "teachers who maintain K-12 classroom-based teaching responsibilities, while also taking on leadership responsibilities outside of the classroom.". Wenner, of Boise State University, and Todd Campbell, of the University of Connecticut, reviewed 54 reports and studies from the last 12 years to compile a literature review about what exactly it means to be a teacher leader. "If teachers are told what to learn, how to learn, and why to learn, their learning is controlled by others and their capacity to lead is stunted researcher Monica Taylor once wrote.
Lastly, structures can foster the growth of teacher leaders by providing adequate access to materials, time, and space for activities that facilitate teacher leadership (e.g., professional development). There does, however, seem to be an intersection within the divergent literature demonstrating that traditional top-down management structures impede the development of teacher leaders and, consequently, school improvement. In addition, cultural norms of isolation and individualism within the teaching profession and the worst case scenario "crab bucket culture" can slow the progress of school improvement. Although increases in student achievement related to teacher quality have yet to be adequately documented, the research is promising. The authors suggest the following definition: Teacher leadership is the process by which teachers, individually or collectively, influence their colleagues, principals, and other members of the school communities to improve teaching and learning practices with the aim of increased student learning and achievement. Their status change disrupts the egalitarian norms of the school, the researchers write. Typically, these leaders are teachers who have significant teaching experience, are known to be excellent educators, and are respected by their peers. Inadequate time for collaboration, learning, and leading as well as a lack of incentives for engaging in leadership activities have been shown empirically to impede the development of teacher leaders. Most commonly, teachers develop leadership skills and strategies in professional development, local training, and/or conferences.
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