HAYIDION The Prizmah Journal


From the Editor

by Barbara Davis Issue: Nurturing Leadership
The Latin verb “ducare,” root of the word “educate,” means “to lead.” Leadership is thus at the heart of the educational process. The present issue of HaYidion addresses the topic of leadership from many different perspectives.

Many aspire to educational leadership, but not all achieve it. Interestingly, the success of a leader is actually determined not by the individual, but by the success of his or her team. And while leadership may involve power, power is not leadership. An oft-quoted but unattributed source describes the difference this way:

A boss relies on authority—a leader relies on cooperation.

A boss says “I”—a leader says “we.”

A boss creates fear—A leader creates confidence.

A boss creates resentment—A leader breeds enthusiasm.

A boss knows how—a leader shows how.

A boss fixes blame—a leader fixes mistakes.

A boss makes work drudgery—A leader makes work interesting.

A boss drives—a leader leads.

How exactly does a leader lead? What qualities are required? What skills? Can it be taught, developed, nurtured? These are the questions that the authors in this issue address, from the perspective of board members, student organizations, Midrash, experience and research.

A complex topic deserves insightful commentary; this issue will provide that for its readers. The topic of leadership is timely and vital to the continuing success, even the survival, of the community day school movement, because, as it states in Proverbs: “Where there is no vision, the people perish.”

We know that you will find vision in the articles that lie herein. As you read them, we know that you will become inspired and will find new and exciting ways to reinvigorate your own leadership. ♦

Dr. Barbara Davis is the Secretary of RAVSAK, Editor of HaYidion and Head of School at the Syracuse Hebrew Day School in Dewitt, NY. Barbara can be reached at shds@twcny.rr.com.

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Nurturing Leadership

Leadership is not a job title; it’s a character trait that day schools seek to cultivate in each student and extend to all stakeholders. Starting with Jewish perspectives on leadership, this issue investigates ways to support the leadership of the head of school, recommends leadership qualities to develop among students, and gives guidance for developing leadership in faculty and board members.