Welcome to the Supporting Inclusive School Leadership web area!

Recent Agency work, particularly the Organisation of Provision (OoP) and Raising the Achievement of All Learners in Inclusive Education (RA) projects, has highlighted school leadership as a crucial factor in developing a more inclusive education system. In the context of the increasing complexity of school leadership, the OoP summary report notes that there is growing pressure to develop a leadership system with development opportunities and support for ‘lonely principals’. Furthermore, leadership is highlighted as a key issue in providing quality support for learners – this includes a positive school culture and, most importantly, flexible responses to diversity.

The overall goal of the Supporting Inclusive School Leadership (SISL) project is to investigate how to develop and promote inclusive school-level leadership through national and local-level policy frameworks and support mechanisms. To do this, three key project questions guide the project activities:

  1. What policy frameworks are required to develop and support inclusive leadership across the whole education system?
  2. What are the essential competences needed for effective inclusive leadership practice at school level?
  3. What support and professional development opportunities are required to develop and sustain effective inclusive school leaders? 

Project framework

The project considers leadership for inclusion aimed at addressing inequality to building community and full participation. It focuses on valued outcomes for all learners, including those most vulnerable to exclusion.

The project began in 2017 and will continue through 2020.


The project aims to create an analysis of available policy and research literature which will identify aspects that impact on school leadership. This analysis will highlight the specific focus upon inclusion and equity, as added value to existing work.

Project activities and outputs

Phase 1 outputs are:

  • A Policy Review which builds upon an extensive review of European and international policies. 
  • A Literature Review based on issues identified in past Agency projects and European and international research literature on inclusive school leadership. 
  • Building on those two reviews, a Country Survey was sent out to all Agency member countries (September 2018). 
  • A Synthesis Report providing an overview of the phase 1 activities and the outlook for phase 2 of the project.
policy analysis
raising achievement
school leadership

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