Date of Submission


Document Type



Doctor of Education




decolonization, Land-based learning, culturally relevant and responsive leadership, Indigenous leadership, transformative leadership


This Organizational Improvement Plan is based on a problem of practice at an inner-city school in a medium-sized Ontario city. There is an achievement/opportunity gap between minoritized students and those in the majority, that run along the Regular English/Specialized Program and Early French Immersion Program lines. Minoritized students are overrepresented in the former two programs. When viewed through a decolonizing lens, built on a framework of culturally relevant and responsive leadership, and informed by Indigenous theoretical frameworks it is a problem of social justice and equity. Using Shields conception of transformative leadership, the problem is examined through an asset-based approach where all cultures and stakeholders are respected and valued. Deszca et al.’s (2020) Change Path Model, informed by dialogic discourse in the form of Talking Circles with stakeholders is used to ensure that dominant narratives are challenged and minoritized voices are heard and centered. While it is recognized that the onus is on the school’s administrative and teaching team to address the gap, students, parents, and the community have an important role to play in the success of the change plan. This OIP proposes solutions grounded in dialogic discourse, self-reflection, professional learning communities, and Land-based learning.