Support staff leadership: opportunities and challenges

Emira, M (2013) 'Support staff leadership: opportunities and challenges.' Leadership, 9 (1). pp. 23-41. ISSN 1742-7150

Official URL:


This article argues that engaging support staff in leadership is likely to develop their role informally and complement teacher leadership. To this end, I examined the views of a group of teaching assistants (TAs) and higher level teaching assistants (HLTAs) in the English Midlands on leadership, the barriers to participation in leadership and the ways to improve their role. It also examines the extent to which their levels of experience should be taken into account when engaging support staff in leadership. Two methods of data collection generating quantitative and qualitative data were used: a survey and follow-up semi-structured interviews. The findings indicated that leadership, among other things, should focus on creating an atmosphere conducive to fostering collaboration and participation in decision-making. Although the participants aspired to collaborate with teachers in leading classrooms, they faced a number of barriers. A number of suggestions were made on how to improve their role.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: leadership, teacher leadership, teaching assistant (TA), higher level teaching assistant (HLTA), professional development
Divisions: School of Education
Identification Number:
Date Deposited: 03 May 2018 09:49
Last Modified: 15 Aug 2021 09:50
URI / Page ID:
Request a change to this item or report an issue Request a change to this item or report an issue
Update item (repository staff only) Update item (repository staff only)