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Leadership is a significant issue in any sphere of work, but it is particularly important in education. Without appropriate prioritizing of values, one cannot become a good leader for an organization. Additionally, reflection helps to promote leadership and find the most viable solutions. In order to make wise decisions, a leader should first of all be able to determine what issues are the most challenging and what solutions can help to mitigate these challenges.
Fowler, who established the eight key values that all people “care about,” remarks that the difference between people is in their attitude to prioritizing these values (Alexander, 2015, p. 11). The values are as follows: individualism, efficiency, liberty, equality, order, fraternity, economic growth, and quality. For policies in education, the most important values seem to be fraternity, liberty, and equality. The next value in the priority list is individualism, and it is followed by order. The economy-related values (efficiency, quality, and economic growth) occupy the lowest places on the importance scale.
The rationale behind prioritizing fraternity is that a leader in the system of education should make sure that students feel comfortable and know that they can treat their peers as family. The value of liberty is manifested through the absence of restrictions on actions. This quality, along with fraternity, will promote a socially just allocation of opportunities for each student in the classroom. The next value that seems to bear a particular prominence is equality, the application of which will promote fairness among all the participants of the learning process.
Following the group of qualities related to freedom, there are the values of individualism and order. Individualism is highly important for students’ self-actualization. The reasons why it is ranked lower than fraternity, liberty, and equality is that these three qualities prepare the ground for students to realize themselves. Without knowing that they can rely on their peers’ support, learners will not be able to actualize their abilities. Order, which follows individualism, is necessary to govern all the processes within the classroom to make sure that the primary values are maintained at the sufficient level.
The set of values which seems to have the least priority is concerned with economic principles. Efficiency involves making sure that no resources are being wasted. Quality, which is characterized as “nebulous” (Alexander, 2013, p. 12), may be viewed as the provision of schools with experienced teachers and classrooms — with good materials. Finally, economic growth is the least connected with education, but it is still important as one of the pillars of any society.
Conclusion: the relation to views on education
The described prioritization of values is associated with my views on education. For me, the most vital aspect of bringing up smart and independent individuals is treating them as equal and allowing them enough independence for expressing their unique ideas and opinions. That is why the values of fraternity, equality, and liberty were put on the top of the list. At the same time, I find economy-related qualities the least connected with school or, at least, with educators’ work.
Thus, I ranked them the lowest. Order and individualism are in the middle of the list since they are the most important after liberty, fraternity, and equality. Every school and classroom are different, but adhering to these values has the potential to create a unique friendly atmosphere that would enable students to do their best.
Alexander, N. A. (2013). Policy analysis for educational leaders: A step-by-step approach. Upper Saddle River, NJ” Pearson.