Since the publication seven years ago of School Leadership for the 21st Century, considerable change has enveloped the educational world. In the UK, the elections of the ‘New’ Labour Government have resulted in many policy initiatives and structural changes impacting on school leadership. Most significantly, the creation of the National College for School Leadership (NCSL) has given both a national focus and national resources to the development of leadership in schools. Linda Ellison and I have been pleased with the popularity of the book and gratified by the number of reprints. When the publishers Routledge (now RoutledgeFalmer) invited us to write a second edition we were delighted. However, the delight turned to apprehension with the realisation that it was not possible to rewrite the original edition but it was necessary to create a completely new book with different chapters and new insights. This we have done and we have renamed the book School Leadership in the 21st Century, engaging our good friend and colleague Christopher Bowring-Carr to assist us. Sadly, two of the contributors to the first edition have met untimely deaths through illness. Mike Billingham and Max Sawatzki were outstanding educators and in recognition of that we have dedicated this rewritten book to them. Max’s outstanding chapter is the only one retained in full from the first book; it was, and remains, a classic.