Repository logo

School leadership and capacity building in Kazakhstan

Change log


Yakavets, N 
Frost, D 
Khoroshash, A 


The article examines the scope for initiative and independent action that lies with school principals in Kazakhstan, with a particular focus on capacity building approaches. A framework drawn from Hargreaves (2001) and Dimmock (2012) guided our inquiry. The study is situated within a large collaborative project between three institutions: the University of Cambridge Faculty of Education, Nazarbayev University Graduate School of Education and Nazarbayev Intellectual Schools. A mixed method research design was used to collect data in 20 schools and 11 other educational organisations in six different geographical locations in Kazakhstan. The findings suggest that capacity building strategies are necessary if innovations are to be implemented across all schools. The article outlines the challenges involved in making school reform effective and draws on the ‘capital framework’. The conclusion considers the implications for practitioners and policy-makers, and outlines an agenda for further research.



3901 Curriculum and Pedagogy, 3902 Education Policy, Sociology and Philosophy, 39 Education, 4 Quality Education

Journal Title

International Journal of Leadership in Education

Conference Name

Journal ISSN


Volume Title


Informa UK Limited
This article arises out of a partnership between the University of Cambridge Faculty of Education and the Graduate School of Education at Nazarbayev University. The research was supported in part by Nazarbayev University with funds from the Ministry of Education and Science the Republic of Kazakhstan. We are grateful to the research team, those who participated in this project and also to Dr Kairat Kurakbayev, who provided useful contribution and others colleagues who commented on earlier drafts of this paper.