Development of the Competency Framework for Southeast Asian School Heads (2014 Edition): A Journey into Excellent School Leadership


  • Sharon Joy Berlin- Chao, Ph.D. seameo-innotech
  • Lilibeth Francisco- Taa, Ph.D.




The Southeast Asian Ministers of Education Organization Center for Educational Innovation and Technology (SEAMEO INNOTECH) developed a competency framework for school heads in Southeast Asia intended to serve as a basis for designing and implementing school head learning programs.  Although SEAMEO INNOTECH has developed one in 2003, a decade had passed and SEAMEO INNOTECH saw the need to update it or even develop a new one so that the framework would continue to be relevant in providing guidance to school heads and in complementing existing competency frameworks developed by the governments of the countries in SEA.   Towards this goal, SEAMEO INNOTECH conducted focus group discussions and consultative workshops using the Appreciative Inquiry approach in nine out of 11 SEAMEO member countries participated by a total of 225 school heads and stakeholders.  The goal was to capture school head competencies common among high-performing school leaders and managers in the region.  The use of AI as an approach brought the school heads and stakeholders back to a journey in time when they were at their best in leading the school towards high performance.  The same approach enabled them to determine what competencies they wish excellent school heads would continue to demonstrate to keep the schools moving forward successfully.  The output was a revised Competency Framework comprised of five competency domains, 16 general competencies, 42 enabling competencies, and 170 indicators.  The five general competencies were ranked by the participants in terms of their importance, frequency of performance, and amount of training school heads would need the most as follows: (1) Strategic Thinking and Innovation, (2) Managerial Leadership, (3) Instructional Leadership, (4) Personal Excellence, (5) Stakeholder Engagement.


Keywords: competency framework, DACUM, appreciative inquiry, SEOMEO   INNOTECH