Collective leadership involves a group of people with a shared vision working toward a common goal. Collective leadership is based on the assumption that anyone on a team can and should lead. Collective leadership creates shared responsibility and decision making, accountability, and authentic engagement. It is a solutions-oriented approach to address problems of practice. It is not a program. 

Since 2016, CTQ has partnered with schools, districts, institutions of higher education, and other nonprofit organizations to start and scale collective leadership efforts. Our most recent case studies highlight the work of individual schools, districts and cohorts engaged in a statewide Collective Leadership Initiative (CLI). Despite the disruptions and challenges caused by the pandemic, 100% of CLI schools reported that collective leadership helped them address those challenges effectively and resiliently. In the words of Libby Ortmann, Education Associate at the South Carolina Department of Education, “Our CLI schools have not only survived, they have thrived.” 

Collective leadership can help your team ideate and implement innovative solutions for your problems of practice. If your school, district, or organization is looking to leverage internal expertise, CTQ will support the design and implementation of collective leadership to meet YOUR system’s short- and long-term goals. Explore FAQs on collective leadership supports below or complete our contact form at the bottom of the page to learn more.

Collective leadership is a set of practices ensuring that team members participate in important decisions impacting student learning and schoolwide success. Traditional approaches to leadership tend to focus on developing individual leaders in general ways. Collective leadership practice is different in that it considers the purpose for leadership first, then embeds relevant skills within every classroom and team in a school or district. The purpose is not to develop individual leaders but to develop leaders collectively focused on the work across a school. Read the blogs below for more detail.

This playbook has numerous tools and processes that your team can use to design and implement collective leadership.
Use these tools to identify strengths and opportunities for growth related to collective leadership.
View this video to create a vision for collective leadership in your context.

Transforming schools requires the expertise and engagement of every educator. Teams must be inclusive of all roles and perspectives to successfully focus on shared responsibility for identifying challenges, setting goals, and doing the work of school-wide transformation and continuous improvement.
CTQ’s collective leadership approach begins with clearly articulating the value of bigger circles of leaders that bring a needed diversity of perspectives.
Transforming how schools serve students, and engaging the collective leadership of school communities to do so, makes a focus on diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) essential.