State plan R&D (2011). Educational leadership for social justice

R+D+i project financed by Ministry of Science and Innovation-Spanish Goverment.


  • Reference: EDU2010-18224
  • Call: Call 2010 for aid for the realization of non-oriented Fundamental Research Projects (B.O.E. of December 31, 2009)
  • Financing Entity: Ministry of Science and Innovation
  • Duration: 01/01/2011 – 12/31/2011
  • PI: F. Javier Murillo Torrecilla
  • Participating researchers: 15


The primary purpose of this research is to explore issues related with educational research on leadership preparation and training in terms of social justice. A particular focus is on leadership preparation programs that help schools and its leaders grapple with social justice issues. At the dawn of the 21st century, there has been an increased attention on social justice and educational leadership (Shoho, Merchang & Lugg, 2005; Marshall & Oliva, 2006). The rising classroom diversity, in Primary and compulsory Secondary schools, tends to increase the gap between “privileged” students and those belonging to any cultural, ethnic, gender minority, disability or even deprived socio-economical context. A fair school enhance the reduction any kind of discrimination and exclusion, in order to achieve full participation and equal outcome levels, regardless of race, gender, social class, sexual orientation, language, membership of a social or cultural group or ability. Investigate towards this goal requires a wide range of specific interventions founded on a new structural organizational level school conception. These innovative approaches cannot be implemented without developing a school culture that attends, encourages and stimulates this changing process towards the students’ inclusion. The formal leader plays a key role building the inclusive culture and social justice issues. International research has found that principals promoting social justice in schools considered as “successful” leaders in unfavourable contexts have a set of behaviours that characterize them. In Spain, however, has not been developed any research focused in these features. This study seeks to determine the leadership model and define which are principal’s behaviours working to develop and promote social justice in Compulsory Education in Spain. The present research will involve an initial exploratory approach using a case study since in-depth investigation is needed.