Betingelser for ledelse i folkeskolen

Niels Brockenhuus

Student thesis: Master executive thesis


In this Master’s thesis I have chosen to examine the public school in Denmark and the conditions for school leadership. What I want to examine is how the law of public schools in Denmark defines the primary task of school, and how that constitutes and impacts the conditions for school leadership. Additionally, I want to explore the development in and history of the public school to see how that contributes to give impact on conditions for school leadership. As a third focus in my study I have chosen to analyze the basis of management in Halsnæs Kommune. These three fields of study I will analyze by using the theory of Pierre Bourdieu. In particular, I will examine how the agent’s habitus impacts their understanding of the main task in public schools, and how history contributes to how power evolves in the field of public schools. Thus, I will use Bourdieu’s concept of field, capital and doxa to examine the conditions of school leadership. The question of this thesis is: How is the school leadership the answer to the challenge and task of the public school? I will examine the conditions for school leadership through the task in public school set by legislation, the task set by history and the task set by the basis of leadership in Halsnæs Kommune. In this Master’s thesis I have found that conditions in the law codify the school leadership as one person and not as a team. At the same time through history and school development, there has been an almost doxic idea of the school leader having a teacher’s degree. A school leader therefore can be said to share habitus with the teachers he leads. And therefore new agents, like an SFO leader, in the field of school leadership will give challenge to the doxa of the field. The increased political focus on public schools and the main task of the public school causes that other fields have an impact through symbolic power on the field of public school. The political field has the power to legislate which has an impact on the conditions for school leadership. These other fields with capital volume challenge the doxa of the school leadership. Even though, the historical understanding of public school reproduces an understanding of school as a place primarily for teaching. This is supported by legislation which has enhanced the last few years causing a shift in focus on more teaching and test and a much smaller focus on how the children develops into social competent human beings. The basis of leadership in Halsnæs Kommune is also challenged by both the habitual understanding of hierarchy in school leadership and by the intention of the basis of leadership which speaks of team leadership and diversity in the leader team. In relation to my own role, as a consultant, and in relation to the school leadership, I think that it is crucial in order to develop good leadership, that there will be a challenge of the doxic understanding of school leadership allowing a focus on professional leadership in a team of leadership. The assignment as a consultant is to support development of the leadership in public schools by challenging their habitual ideas of facing the challenge in the task of public school. In this way I can contribute to the strategically change of school leadership so that the whole assignment of making a school for both educational and individually social skills.

EducationsMaster of Public Governance, (Executive Master Programme) Final Thesis
Publication date2012
Number of pages48