Spiritual Leadership

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The Role of the Principal in the Spiritual Leadership of an Anglican School


Rev. Graham Stanton
EdComm 2015

Some leaders lead by force, others by force of personality; some lead with wisdom, others with wit. One thing that all leaders share is a lasting impact on those they are privileged to lead. The same is true for spiritual leadership, and particularly so for the spiritual leadership of an Anglican school. While all members of a school community have a role to play in its spiritual life, the principal carries a unique responsibility and privilege for its spiritual leadership.

Commissioned by EdComm and developed through interviews with a number of principals, council chairs, council members and chaplains, this discussion paper provides guidance for leaders of Anglican schools to think about how spiritual leadership is exercised (or could be exercised) within a particular school community.

It offers the opportunity to affirm what is already being done and to suggest some directions for the future. For new and aspiring principals and councils, we hope it will provide valuable guidance and support.


Praise for Spiritual Leadership

Graham Stanton’s discussion paper, Spiritual Leadership: The Role of the Principal in the Spiritual Leadership of an Anglican School, is a valuable resource for schools and school leaders. His description of what spiritual leadership is and the many shapes that it can take provides a welcomed rubric by which leaders in schools can evaluate performance and plan for change. His understanding of the Scriptures, the available literature and the outcome of his research gives authority to his paper and fills a gap in our understanding of how spiritual leadership can be evaluated and enhanced in Anglican schools.

Stephen Kinsella, Headmaster—The Illawarra Grammar School, Wollongong

Biblically-based, meticulously researched and superbly written, Graham Stanton’s discussion paper provides a comprehensive analysis of this complex and significant role in a manner that demonstrates profound understanding of the uniqueness of each leader’s style and school context, and cleverly avoids advocating a ‘one size fits all approach’. Providing clarity, wisdom and insight, as well as excellent discussion ‘prompts’, this paper most definitely fulfils its aim of deepening the understanding of and the conversation around the role of the principal in the spiritual leadership of an Anglican School.

Megan Krimmer, Principal—Roseville College, Sydney


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