INCLUSIVE SOCIAL JUSTICE LEADERSHIP AND REQUISITE LEARNING EXPERIENCES
San Francisco State University (UNITED STATES)
The need for the development of inclusive educational leadership through specific learning experiences incorporated in higher education and beyond is significant at the global, international, and transnational levels. Preparing educational leaders who are ready to build and maintain inclusive school communities with the aim of working towards the elimination of racism, inequalities, and injustices involves strategic and continuous efforts in the 21st century. In this paper the reference to inclusion and inclusive education extend beyond students with disabilities to include all forms of othering that occurs in our schools -- race, class, gender, bilingual learners (most often referred to as English language learners) and all other marginalized students. With the expressed intent of countering exclusionary schooling that isolates those who are othered through the preparation of inclusive social justice education administrators and leaders.
A review of existing literature related to transformational and transformative educational leadership, critical race theory and critical social theory, and the preparation of social justice principals and educational leaders revealed multiple critiques of current practices, with some of the literature recommending specific learning experiences needed to prepare education administrators and leaders who have the dispositions, self-knowledge, professional knowledge and skills necessary to lead. This is particularly critical in the U.S. where the current professional standards for educational administration and leadership are entrenched in an ideology of color blindness.
In particular the works of Brown (2004), Capper, Theoharis, & Sebastian (2006), and Furman (2012) provided our program with useful frameworks for rethinking our work as well as some essential learning experiences that to a large extent have been integrated into our program. Essential to this work has been the ability of professors to intentionally create atmospheres of emotional safety for social justice risk taking in their courses and other learning experiences (Theoharis, & Sebastian, 2006). Allowing for the use of cultural autobiographies, life histories, prejudice reduction workshops, cross-cultural interviews, educational plunges, diversity panels, reflective analysis journals, and activist assignments as particularly useful learning experiences to support aspiring social justice education leaders expand their awareness (Brown, 2004). In manners that are consistent with Furman’s focuses on praxis that involves both reflection and action in a Freireian sense (2012).
 Brown, K. M. (2004). Leadership for social justice and equity: .Weaving a transformative framework and pedagogy. Educational administration quarterly, 40(1), 77-108.
 Capper, C. A., Theoharis, G., & Sebastian, J. (2006). Toward a framework for preparing leaders for social justice. Journal of Educational Administration, 44(3), 209-224.
 Furman, G. (2012). Social justice leadership as praxis developing capacities through preparation programs. Educational Administration Quarterly, 48(2), 191-229.