Leadership Theory & Student Recidivism Capstone Project

Pages: 20 (6063 words)  ·  Style: APA  ·  Bibliography Sources: 5  ·  File: .docx  ·  Level: Doctorate  ·  Topic: Education

Buy full Download Microsoft Word File paper
for $19.77

[. . .]

All of these factors end up contributing to a cycle of personal and social injustice that is perpetuated from one generation to the next. It destabilizes any efforts at regeneration and leads to the continued social and moral deterioration of populations that require whole families and community support. The interlinked nature of crime, culture, society, economics and politics makes it so that this issue is not one that can be addressed at any one level but rather must be addressed holistically at all levels because it is not just a criminal issue—a matter of people breaking the law and being punished. It is a cultural, social, economical and political issue.

Society has attempted to address the problem by adopting alternative approaches to imprisonment, such as rehabilitation and alternative forms of punishment for convicts. This can start early on for juvenile offenders, who are typically the most likely to go on to be adult offenders as well: diversion programs have been set up in several states to help stop the trend of recidivism and to keep young persons from becoming lifelong offenders, criminals and tenants within the prison industrial complex. The benefit of diversion programs is that they provide more oversight for young offenders and can be useful in getting them on a better track in life rather than sitting them behind bars where they are basically like people in time-out, neglected, forgotten but out of the way. The diversion program provides “drug testing, restitution, participation in mentoring efforts, community service, counseling” and other programs for young offenders to be part of (Mears et al., 2016, p. 960). This approach helps them to keep out of jail and to break the cycle of recidivism, if only in a small way.

Restorative justice can be a solution to the problem of traditional incarceration. Johnson et al. (2015) shows that the concept of Restorative justice is more meaningful both for perpetrators of crime and for victims, who prefer to see restoration rather than incarceration as the outcome of a trial: “victims reported higher perceptions of fairness and greater feelings of justice through the restorative justice programs as opposed to victim reports of traditional justice programs” (p. 2349). Johnson et al. (2015) also note that in cases where restorative justice has been tried, recidivism rates have fallen by 26%. That is a significant decline and indicates that traditional methods of justice, such as incarceration in the prison industrial complex, where many have their lives ruined and from which so many communities suffer, need to be rethought and set aside in favor of new forms of seeing justice done.

To avoid the cycle of recidivism that so many inmate suffer from, it is important to find alternative solutions that can free inmates from it. The need to educate them effectively can be one such alternative. Education is the process of liberating the mind from oppressive thoughts and choices that negatively impact the life of the person (Simsek, 2012).

Organizational Context of the Site

The West Chester Program currently has no content on supported practices about leadership that will support teachers in their teaching of re-entry students and increase motivation in students. As the research shows, there is clearly a need to help re-entry students change their lives and avoid a life of recidivism. While alternative programs have been useful in the criminal justice system, West Chester Shelter needs to do more to impart upon re-entry youths the importance and value of education by using inspirational methods.

Theoretical Framework

The framework for this project is the Understanding by Design (backward design) framework. It is used in conjunction with the idea that leadership—namely charismatic and inspirational leadership—along with the application of suitable learning theories—namely adult learning theory and transformational learning theory—can be used as guides in the creation of the project deliverable. Leadership and learning foci provide the necessary perspectives on the learning process for vulnerable populations like the one used in this project. Young adults coming from incarceration need both guidance in the form of leadership and learning assistance so as to be able to avoid future trouble or criminality (Gagnon, 2018; Vacca, 2008). Understanding by Design provides the necessary guided approach to curriculum construction.

Leadership Theories

The basic tenets of leadership theories explain the importance of leadership and how it affects followers. Leadership is a set of practices that can be learned, observed, and imitated (Bass, 2008). Charismatic, transformational and inspirational, leadership theories explain how leaders can encourage their followers who are attracted to the leader’s purpose and the person. These leadership styles can attract the attention of group members and serve as a focal point for positive direction in followers.

According to Grabo and Vugt (2016), the fundamentals of charismatic leadership promote and maintains pro-social behaviors within individuals and groups. As Reivich, Seligman and McBride (2011) point out, a leader has to know what is going on within himself before he can really be of help to others. A sense of self-awareness is thus critical to a leader’s ability to lead. Teaching about pro-social behaviors is a way to inspire others and help them to become accountable and responsible to themselves and to others. A leader should be as self-aware as he is aware and mindful of others—this is what allows a foundation for social and emotional intelligence to be put in place; it is also what allows the leader to tap into strengths and use the to guide and assist others; finally, it is what allows the leader to recognize deficiencies and work on improving them. This three-pronged approach to leadership starts with a sense of self—and that sense can only be obtained through study and reflection.

As George (2000) points out, leaders have to possess a high degree of emotional intelligence in order to connect in a positive way with workers. Emotional intelligence is something can be developed through personal reflection and self-analysis. It can also come by way of observing others and noting how people interact and what sort of behaviors trigger particular reactions. Emotional intelligence can be especially useful for young adults in re-entry, so teachers should be made aware of how it can be used to help them interact with young students and how their own emotional intelligence can be used to inspire them to want to do better in life.

Once one knows who one is, one can better utilize the strengths, skills, knowledge and special tools one possesses to assist followers. However, if a leader is deceived or deluded about his own personal strengths and assets, he can cause a great deal more harm than good. Followers might view him as hypocritical and ultimately reject him, which leaves him with little influence or ability to motivate or inspire; or they may be completely turned off by his lack of awareness about his own self and that may turn them to think that if he is not even going to live up to the standards that he preaches and communicates then why should they? Thus it is absolutely essential that a leader be self-aware, know his strengths and work on his weaknesses so as to improve them and get to a point where they are minimal at most. This is essentially what Frederickson, Cohn, Coffey, Pek and Finkel (2008) describe when they talk about building lives through self-examination, meditation and the development of personal resources.

Transformational leadership is a positive way for teachers to inspire their students. It is about recognizing the power within oneself and working to achieve a clear goal. Transformational leaders have to communicate a vision to their followers. That vision has to be attainable. The followers have to buy into it and pursue it. In order to overcome resistance, the leader has to use reason and logic to show why the vision is good and why it should be embraced. The transformational leader inspires and provides support for followers as they work towards achieving the vision (Warrick, 2011). Transformational leadership can help to change the lives of individuals so long as they are convinced to buy into the vision that the leader is communicating. That is why it is important for the leader to have emotional intelligence, too, because this is a skill that the leader can use to help get the follower to believe in what he is saying will be beneficial for him.

Adult Learning Theory

According to Merriam (2014) adult learners are motivated by wanting to improve their lives. Furthermore, adult learners learn by transformational learning, so they are different later in life: “Students’ benefit and their achievement increases when adults learn and grow in school” (Drago & Blum, p.115). In addition, the cognitive perspective on learning states that importance has to be given to thoughts influence action. Adults learn… [END OF PREVIEW]

Two Ordering Options:

Which Option Should I Choose?
1.  Buy full paper (20 pages)Download Microsoft Word File

Download the perfectly formatted MS Word file!

- or -

2.  Write a NEW paper for me!✍🏻

We'll follow your exact instructions!
Chat with the writer 24/7.

Senior Seminar Term Paper

Truancy in Illinois Term Paper

Violence in Schools Term Paper

Anger Management for Students in Schools Tom Term Paper

Humanistic Psychology Term Paper

View 38 other related papers  >>

Cite This Capstone Project:

APA Format

Leadership Theory & Student Recidivism.  (2019, May 30).  Retrieved January 24, 2020, from https://www.essaytown.com/subjects/paper/recidivism-teaching-students/7813017

MLA Format

"Leadership Theory & Student Recidivism."  30 May 2019.  Web.  24 January 2020. <https://www.essaytown.com/subjects/paper/recidivism-teaching-students/7813017>.

Chicago Format

"Leadership Theory & Student Recidivism."  Essaytown.com.  May 30, 2019.  Accessed January 24, 2020.