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This assignment needs to be based around Early Childhood settings in Australia so will need to refer to the Australian Curriulum (ACARA) and Early Years Learning Framework (EYLF)
The term leadership and management have often been used interchangeably. However, it is extremely important to understand the difference between them in order to understand the relationship between the two. As Rodd (2013) aptly said that this confusion has plagued the understanding of the two concepts. The role of the educators was described in the National Quality Framework, which laid down that every provider was supposed to appoint an educational leader to ensure the implementation of policies and practices (Cheeseman, 2012). This essay shall include a brief description of the roles of the educators as leaders and attempt to find similarities and differences between the two concepts. Further, this essay will examine the relationship between the two terms leadership and management and examine the three theories, namely the transformational theory, the socio-cultural theory and the behavioural theory in context of early childhood settings
'Leadership and learning are indispensable to each other.' – John F. Kennedy
As the debate on the nature of leadership evolves, theorizing early childhood has been a priority. In Australia, the policy has evolved to include early childhood leaders for strategic planning and implementation of policies and practices effectively (Bertocci, 2009). In fact, the National Early Childhood Development Strategy embodies that it is essential to invest in the early years in order to firstly, provide preschool education to all children, secondly, reducing the gap on indigenous childhood development and finally to keep children from harm. Blatchford and Manni (2007) have identified certain categories of effective leadership practice which include, identifying collective vision, ability to encourage reflection, to distribute leadership and most importantly to balance leadership and management. Thus, it is clear that they are pedagogical leaders who not only work with children, but staff and families with an aim to build relationships.
Stodgill's (1974) handbook on leadership defines the term leaders as agents of change and individuals who have the capability to affect people and leadership occurs when one group member modifies the motivation or competencies of others in a group.This view is purported by experts in the early childhood (Arthur, Beecher, Death, Dockett, & Farmer, 2017) Researchers have identified that that there are different functions of a manager which are broadly classified into five functions such as Planning, Staffing, Leading, Organizing, Controlling (Kartz, 1992). . In addition to the aforementioned, the most important skill of an educator as a manager is the ability to design solutions (Siraj & Hallet, 2013).
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