Educational Policy, Partnership and Leadership

The interests of this group underpin and influence much of the research carried out in the School of Education. Specifically we are concerned with the changing policy agenda for education, the new relationships being forged as school, further education and university partnerships change in role and structure, and in considering what types of leadership might be required to address the multiple challenges of the 21st century.

Education has the power to transform lives. Without education we cannot begin to answer the questions that challenge our existence. The Policy, Partnership and Leadership research group explores the changing policy agendas impacting on education both in the United Kingdom and abroad. Through our partnership with educationalists locally, regionally, nationally and across the globe we explore new models of working; examine the impact of new policy iterations; and work with key government organisations to identify the leadership challenges to producing an education system that is fit for purpose in the 21st Century.

The Research Group is supported by leading academics whose area of research interest lie in the area of Policy, Partnership and Leadership. Professor Graham Butt is currently researching aspects of collaborative and partnership approaches to continuing professional development, as well as the management of Teaching Assistants in schools; Professor Marlene Morrison’s research interests are in education leadership linked to social justice, diversity, and inclusion, most recently in post-compulsory and adult education, and 14-19 education and training. Professor Liz Browne has published on the changing leadership challenges for Higher Education and Dr Linet Arthur’s research has included continuing professional development and performance management in schools and universities, mergers in higher education, middle leadership in schools.

Our academics contribute to the work of the Centre for Educational Consultancy and Development (CECD) bringing their expertise to support the Centre, which is focused on knowledge exchange and consultancy in areas connected with the changing policy environment for children and families, on the demands of the new National Curriculum, on leadership conversations in a changing world and on other areas linked to meeting the needs of teachers and lecturers working in a rapidly changing educational marketplace.

Our expertise has been called upon to work collaboratively with Oxford University on a Leadership for Learning project and working with headteachers and senior leaders in Oxford City Schools. This project is intended to bring about major changes in the achievement of young people in the City.

We are working with a national organisation, commissioned by the Department of Business, Innovation and Skills, to explore the management and leadership training requirements of the Further Education and Skills sector. This project has involved carrying out a literature review, interviewing senior leaders and overseeing a number of management training programmes delivered to staff working in this sector.

A research project funded by Jisc entitled ‘the digital student’ is focusing our interest on the technological preferences of young students as they study in Further Education Colleges. The purpose of the project is to investigate and prepare colleges for a digital future in a changing education landscape.

The Leadership for Learning collaborative project working with Oxford University and initially eleven City Primary Schools has been developed to support and improve leadership of learning.

Deb McGregor, Linet Arthur and Liz Browne at The school of Education are working alongside Oxford University academics, Ian Menter and Nigel Fancourt to deliver the project. The two year programme has provided speakers, eminent in their particular field of school leadership, conducting participatory workshops and seminars for the Heads, Senior Leaders and Middle managers of each of the participating primaries.

Academic staff with related research interests