The Listening Leader: Creating the Conditions for Equitable School Transformation
April 2017, Jossey-Bass
LISTENING . . . THE KEY TO BECOMING A TRANSFORMATIVE SCHOOL LEADER
The Listening Leader is a practical guide that will inspire school, district, and teacher leaders to make substantive change and increase equitable student outcomes. Rooted in the values of equity, relationships, and listening, this luminous book helps reimagine what is possible in education today. Drawing from more than twenty years of experience in public schools, Shane Safir incorporates hands-on strategies and powerful stories to show us how to leverage one of the most vital tools of leadership: listening. As a Listening Leader you'll feel more confident in these core competencies:
- Cultivating relationships with stakeholders
- Addressing equity challenges in your organization
- Gathering student, staff, and parent perspectives as rich data on improvement
- Fostering a thriving culture of collaboration and innovation
The Listening Leader offers a much-needed leadership model to transform every facet of school life, and most importantly, to shape our schools into equitable places of learning. As Michael Fullan writes in the Foreword, "Read it, act on it, and reap the benefits for all."
"This book is a 'must have' for any leader trying to move the needle on equity. Drawing from her lived experience as a principal and leadership coach, Safir offers stories that give insight and practical strategies that get results. It's one you'll keep coming back to."
Zaretta Hammond, author of Culturally Responsive Teaching and the Brain
" The Listening Leader immediately changed the way I interact with students, teachers, families and community members."
Tamara Friedman, assistant principal, Berkeley High School
"Shane Safir has written a brilliant book. As engaging as it is informative and as revelatory as it is relevant. It is a must-read for school leaders and those who aspire to lead."
Chris Emdin, associate professor of science education, Teachers College, Columbia University; author of For White Folks Who Teach In the Hood and the Rest of Ya'll too
List of Tables, Figures, and Exhibits
Chapter 1: The Transformative Power of Listening
PART ONE: AWARENESS
Chapter 2: The Core Tenets of Listening Leadership
Chapter 3: Listening for Equity
Chapter 4: Getting Ready to Listen
PART TWO: RELATIONAL CAPITAL
Chapter 5: Practicing Deep Listening
Chapter 6: Practicing Strategic Listening
Chapter 7: Listening to Parents
Chapter 8: Listening to Students
PART THREE: COMPLEX CHANGE
Chapter 9: Influencing Complex Change
Chapter 10: Leveraging Listening Routines
Chapter 11: Growing a Listening Culture
Appendix A: Listening Leadership Rubric
Appendix B: The Six Stances of a Listening Leader (Chapters 5 and 6)
Appendix C: The Instructional Conversation Planning Tool (Chapter 6)
Appendix D: Additional Resources for Listening to Parents (Chapter 7)
Appendix E: Additional Resources for Listening to Students (Chapter 8)
Appendix F: Telling the Current State Story Tool (Chapter 9)
Appendix G: Tools and Facilitation Steps for Listening Routines (Chapter 10)
Appendix H: Tools for Growing a Listening Culture (Chapter 11)
About the Author
SHANE SAFIR is a coach, writer, and facilitator. She was the founding co-principal of June Jordan School for Equity, an innovative national model identified by scholar Linda Darling-Hammond as having "beaten the odds in supporting the success of low-income students of color." Visit her at shanesafir.com.