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Leadership in Education: Five Commonalities


"Mr. Goldberg looks back on the 43 interviews he has conducted since 1989 with eminent individuals who merit the label "educational leaders," and he discovers that there is no algorithm for success in educational leadership -- though there are a handful of 'large-minded qualities' that leaders tend to share."

Leadership can take more than one form and has many characteristics, but throughout the 43 interviews, five qualities stood out. These leaders held a bedrock belief in what they were doing; they had the courage to swim upstream in behalf of their beliefs; they possessed a social conscience, particularly on issues of racism and poverty; they maintained a seriousness of purpose, holding high standards and devoting years of service to their causes; and they exemplified situational mastery, the happy marriage of personal skills and accomplishment."