School leadership in the PYP (2016)

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Christopher Day, Andrew Townsend, Rupert Knight and Katherine Richardson School of Education—The University of Nottingham

Postsecondary outcomes thumbThis study explored the links between school leadership and the implementation of the International Baccalaureate (IB) Primary Years Programme (PYP). The research was conducted in six schools, with different histories of PYP use, located in six different European countries: Austria, England, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands and Sweden. The researchers employed a mixed method, multi-perspective case-study design, using staff surveys and in-depth interviews. Findings suggested that the leaders in the six schools demonstrated a firm and passionate commitment to IB values. Moreover, schools in which principals have themselves had experience of teaching the PYP are more likely to model PYP values and practices. Results also indicated that the PYP coordinator was generally seen as being more directly involved in the work of teachers and PYP implementation while the school principal was perceived as being responsible for the overarching strategic elements of leadership. Lastly, the success of the PYP is likely to be enhanced when the PYP coordinator is part of a core senior leadership team and is provided with appropriate “time to lead” the induction and continuing professional development of PYP teachers.

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