Systems Thinking for Principals of Learning- Focused Schools


  • Haim Shaked Hemdat Hadarom College of Education, Israel
  • Chen Schechter Bar-Ilan University, Israel



systems thinking, school principals, leadership for learning, curriculum, professional learning communities, data interpretation


Systems thinking involves attempts to understand and improve complex systems, examines systems holistically, and focuses on the way that a system's constituent parts interrelate. This essay provides examples of how systems thinking can enable principals to demonstrate instructional leadership and nurture learning-focused schools in the current era of complexity, diversity, and accountability. These examples illustrate how systems thinking contributes to developing school curriculum, empowering professional learning communities, and fostering performance data interpretation. Overall, systems thinking offers a comprehensive way of both conceptualizing and practicing leadership for learning within the entire school setting, which leads directly to enhancing the quality of instruction and raising students' achievement.


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Author Biographies

Haim Shaked, Hemdat Hadarom College of Education, Israel

Haim Shaked, PhD, is Vice President for Academic Affairs at Hemdat Hadarom College of Education, Netivot, Israel. As a scholar-practitioner with seventeen years of experience as school principal, his research interests include instructional leadership, system thinking in school leadership, and education reform. He can be reached at

Chen Schechter, Bar-Ilan University, Israel

Chen Schechter, PhD, is a professor at the School of Education in Bar-Ilan University, Ramat-Gan, Israel. His research areas include organizational learning, learning from success, educational change, educational leadership, system thinking, and qualitative research methods.






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