Making the Leap: Moving from Deputy Headship to Headship
Centre for Research in Education Leadership and Management Seminar
Presented by Dr Jill Berry
Transition into first-time headship is a challenge, as the new leader lets go of their former role and prepares to adopt a new professional persona. My research explores the nature of transition as experienced by deputies moving to be heads of schools which are new to them. It identifies what is distinctive about the experience and what can be learnt which may be of benefit to future generations of new headteachers and the schools they join. It focusses on the challenges of making this transition, and the strategies incoming heads adopt.
Six participants are tracked through their final months as deputies and into the early months of headship. Socialisation into this new role is reciprocal; the new heads affect, and are affected by, the communities they join. They negotiate the tension, and attempt to find balance, between inheriting the role from their predecessor and inhabiting this role and making it their own.
Dr Jill Berry
After teaching for 30 years across six different schools, during the last ten of which I was a head, I left full-time headship in 2010 and embarked on a Professional Doctorate in Education, which I completed in 2016. I have also carried out a range of leadership consultancy work, including as an Associate for the National College for Teaching and Leadership. I currently undertake leadership-related staff training and I support schools in headteacher and senior leader appointments, appraisal/professional review, coaching and mentoring.
I am also a great advocate for the power of social networking for continuing professional development in education, tweeting at @jillberry102 and blogging via the platform @staffrm.
I write frequently for print and online educational publications, and my first book, ‘Making the leap – moving from deputy to head’ is to be published by Crown House in January 2017.