Publication Details

Johnson, G., Dempster, N., McKenzie, L., Klieve, H., Fluckiger, B., Lovett, S., Riley, T. & Webster, A. (2014). Principals as Literacy Leaders with Indigenous Communities: Leadership for learning to read - 'Both ways'. Kingston, Australia: Australian Primary Principals Association.


The Principals as Literacy Leaders with Indigenous Communities (PALLIC) project was funded by the Australian Government through the Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations (DEEWR) under Closing the Gap: Expansion of Intensive Literacy and Numeracy Programs for Underachieving Indigenous Students. Forty-eight (48) schools in three government jurisdictions, South Australia, Queensland and the Northern Territory, took part. This Australian Primary Principals Association (APPA) initiative was, first and foremost, a research-informed leadership development project. Leadership development, in this instance, focussed on improving Indigenous children's reading while enhancing local leadership capacity to continue with this task after the project's completion. A collaborative research program between Griffith University, the principals and their school communities was an essential mechanism in investigating the impact of the project on leadership capacity and in turn, on improvements in children's reading. The findings from the research program confirm improvements in Indigenous children's ability to learn to read. The findings report significant signs and hopeful first steps towards sustaining reading improvement as an ongoing leadership task through principals' teamwork with Indigenous leadership partners in their school communities. Both of these general conclusions are elaborated in the summary, which follows, as are some of the difficulties which the research uncovered. The findings are drawn from a triangulation analysis of data: -Principals' self-reported evaluation reports of Reading Action Plans; -Survey responses from principals, Indigenous leadership partners, teachers and literacy leadership mentors; and -Seven case study school visits.