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Abstract

Details

International Journal of Mentoring and Coaching in Education, vol. 8 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2046-6854

Article
Publication date: 6 September 2019

Benjamin Kutsyuruba, Lorraine Godden and John Bosica

The purpose of this paper is to explore the impact that mentoring has on Canadian early career teachers’ (ECTs’) well-being. The authors describe findings from a…

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore the impact that mentoring has on Canadian early career teachers’ (ECTs’) well-being. The authors describe findings from a pan-Canadian Teacher Induction Survey (n=1,343) that examined perceptions and experiences of ECTs within K–12 publicly funded schools, with particular interest in retention, career interests and the impact of mentoring on well-being.

Design/methodology/approach

An online survey was used to examine perceptions and experiences of ECTs within publicly funded K–12 schools across Canada. For this paper, the authors selectively analyzed 35 survey questions that pertained to mentorship and well-being of ECTs, using quantitative and qualitative procedures.

Findings

The findings revealed a strong correlation between the mentoring experiences and well-being of the participating Canadian ECTs. The teachers who did not receive mentorship indicated significantly lower feelings of well-being, and conversely, teachers who participated in some kind of mentorship demonstrated much higher levels of well-being.

Research limitations/implications

This paper draws on the selective analysis of the data from a larger study to elicit the connections between the mentoring support and perceived well-being. Due to inconsistencies in terminology and multifaceted offerings of induction and mentoring supports for ECTs across Canada, there might have been some ambiguity regarding the formal and informal mentorship supports. A longitudinal study that is designed to specifically examine the connection between the mentorship and well-being of ECTs could yield deeper understandings. A comparative study in different international contexts is commended.

Practical implications

The findings showed that the ECTs who did not receive any mentorship scored significantly lower feelings of well-being from external, structural, and internal well-being sources, and conversely, the ECTs who participated in some kind of mentorship scored much higher levels of feelings of well-being. Policy-makers should therefore continue to confidently include mentorship as an intentional strategy to support and help ECTs to flourish. However, inconsistent scoring between individuals and their levels of external, structural and internal well-being suggest that more research on the connection between mentoring and well-being of the ECTs.

Social implications

Work-life imbalance seems to be more challenging for ECTs than policymakers who provide these expectations are aware. Therefore, excessive work demands and intensive workloads need to be given proper attention for their potential negative effects (such as stress, burnout and absence) on the beginning teachers’ health and well-being. Likewise, purposeful strength-based approaches should be undertaken to establish generative and pro-social efforts to enhance the connectedness, collaboration, collegiality and resilience-building opportunities for novice professionals within flourishing learning communities.

Originality/value

In this paper, the authors have undertaken the first steps in exploring the impact that mentoring has on Canadian ECTs’ well-being. The study increases the understanding of how mentoring can be used as a purposeful strategy to support the well-being of ECTs and retain them in the teaching profession in Canada and potentially in different international contexts.

Details

International Journal of Mentoring and Coaching in Education, vol. 8 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2046-6854

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 19 June 2020

Sabre Cherkowski, Benjamin Kutsyuruba and Keith Walker

The purpose of this multiyear research study is to examine leadership in K-12 schools using a positive organizational perspective to understand how to foster, support and…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this multiyear research study is to examine leadership in K-12 schools using a positive organizational perspective to understand how to foster, support and encourage flourishing in schools. In this article, the authors describe the lived experiences of a small group of principals and vice-principals in K-12 schools describing how they have experienced flourishing in their work.

Design/methodology/approach

The research was carried out using a qualitative, phenomenological approach to examine the lived, concrete and situated experiences of a small sample of school administrators (N = 9) in two school districts in the province of British Columbia, Canada. Data were collected through individual interviews that were designed to be appreciative in nature. These lasted between 60 and 90 min, were recorded and transcribed. The interview data were deductively and inductively analyzed and arranged into themes that demonstrate the key components of positive leadership for flourishing in schools, derived from these participants' experiences.

Findings

Building on and extending their findings that school administrators feel a sense of flourishing when they focus on their work from the values of purpose, passion and play, the authors found that a fourth value, presence, was important for these participants to experience well-being at work. Principals’ sense of well-being was strongly related to the notion of balance in their work and life, which helped them address potential stress and ill-being. Findings suggest that a strengths-based, positive approach to school leadership offers an alternative perspective for supporting and encouraging well-being at work.

Research limitations/implications

Limitations of this research include the small sample size and the appreciative focus with which the data were collected that meant that participants were providing their experiences from a positive perspective. This article offers a complementary perspective for researching well-being in schools, from a positive, strengths-based approach to examining the work of administrators.

Practical implications

The authors offer insights into the work of school leaders from an appreciative, strengths-based perspective on understandings and practices that may be useful to principals and vice-principals who wish to enhance their workplace well-being. The authors suggest that administrators can learn to craft their work in ways that highlight existing well-being conditions toward amplifying and sustaining well-being. Working from four animating values for flourishing seemed to promote well-being for this small sample of administrators within the existing challenges and complexities of their work.

Originality/value

This article offers examples of lived experiences of principal and vice-principal well-being that highlight what happens when school leaders attend to their work from a positive, appreciative, strength-based perspective. This research perspective is an additional source of knowledge about well-being in schools complementing the existing research on well-being from a stress management and reduction perspective.

Details

Journal of Educational Administration, vol. 58 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0957-8234

Keywords

Book part
Publication date: 8 December 2016

Benjamin Kutsyuruba and Keith D. Walker

It is well known that trust is an essential, yet a fragile part of organizational life. Because trust sometimes has to be placed without guarantees, it will inevitably be…

Abstract

It is well known that trust is an essential, yet a fragile part of organizational life. Because trust sometimes has to be placed without guarantees, it will inevitably be broken, violated, and damaged when parties involved in trustworthy relationships let others down. When trust-destroying events occur, trust is shattered and its level plummets quickly into the domain of distrust. The speed with which trust can be destroyed depends on the magnitude of damage from the act of untrustworthiness and the perceived intentionality of the untrustworthiness. Moreover, if seen as intentional, the destruction of trust is particularly severe, as intentional untrustworthiness reveals malevolent intentions that are seen as highly predictive of future untrustworthiness. Often, leaders are the ones responsible for improper handling of, destroying, or violating trust in their organizations. In this chapter, we explore the consequences of leaders for violating trust and examine how trust changes over time as a function of different types of violations and attempts at restoration. We argue that because distrust may irrevocably harm organizations, leaders as moral agents need to consciously work to rebuild relationships, restore broken trust, and instill hope.

Details

The Dark Side of Leadership: Identifying and Overcoming Unethical Practice in Organizations
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78635-499-0

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 6 June 2014

Lorraine Godden, Leigha Tregunna and Benjamin Kutsyuruba

The purpose of this paper is to describe a qualitative action research study into the collective experiences of establishing a mentoring culture within a research triad…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to describe a qualitative action research study into the collective experiences of establishing a mentoring culture within a research triad consisting of a university professor together with a doctoral student and a master's level student who served as research assistants (RAs). This paper documents a process of ongoing reflection, which was used to gain insight about the personal selves, the professional selves, the role of being a RA, and concepts, ideas, and frameworks that might be useful in fulfilling the work inside and outside of the collaborative research project.

Design/methodology/approach

A Faculty of Education within a Canadian university provided the context for the study. A large-scale, pan-Canadian document analysis research project served as the context for mentorship activities. The Adaptive Mentorship© model (Ralph and Walker, 2010) was the tool used to document and analyze experiences of working on the research project. Completion of individual mentoring session reflections, as recommended by the Adaptive Mentorship© model, provided a means for documenting the process and experiences within the triad.

Findings

Findings indicated that the enhancement of working environment and the professional growth of all three members of the research triad were primarily achieved as a result of the commitment to collaborative mentoring for the duration of this project rather than as a direct result of application of the model. Nonetheless, the application of the Adaptive Mentorship© model within the research project triad proved to be a valuable tool for supporting the social competence-based and experiential needs.

Originality/value

In the context of this study, collaborative mentoring led to professional growth and an enhancement of the working environment due to multiple contact-points and exposures to specific tasks or skill-sets. The establishment of the mentoring culture and continued identification of individual needs within the triad allowed for adaptive support, appropriate skills development, and an increase in confidence necessary for both students to be successful in their RA positions and in turn, successfully support the university professor to complete the project. The experience suggests that the Adaptive Mentorship© model, if further refined, could be applied to graduate RAships with multiple participants, increasing the potential to enhance research experiences through its focus on one or several specific tasks or skill-sets around which the work is organized.

Details

International Journal of Mentoring and Coaching in Education, vol. 3 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2046-6854

Keywords

Book part
Publication date: 8 December 2016

Abstract

Details

The Dark Side of Leadership: Identifying and Overcoming Unethical Practice in Organizations
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78635-499-0

Article
Publication date: 16 August 2011

Keith Walker, Benjamin Kutsyuruba and Brian Noonan

The purpose of this paper is to examine the trust‐related aspect of the work of school principals. The authors' exploratory examination of the Canadian school principals'…

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine the trust‐related aspect of the work of school principals. The authors' exploratory examination of the Canadian school principals' perceptions of their moral agency and trust‐brokering roles described their establishing, maintaining, and recovering of trust in schools. This article is delimited to the selected perceptions of Canadian principals' regarding the fragile nature of trust in their school settings.

Design/methodology/approach

This study used the open‐ended responses from surveys sent to school principals (n=177), who responded to the authors' invitation to complete a survey, as part of a larger study, in the ten provinces and three territories of Canada. The data analyses included theme and cross‐theme analyses.

Findings

This study has pointed to the perception that trust‐related matters are an important, yet a fragile, aspect of the work of principals. Principals often have to deal with trust‐related matters, which have caused trustworthiness to be threatened and trusting relationships to be broken. Trust‐related problems contribute to the fragility of trust and frequently seem to pertain to relationships between principal and other administrators, staff members, parents, and students. Most of the time, principals as leaders felt personal responsibility to make sure relationships among all stakeholders were sustained and, if broken, restored. The prevalent belief among participants in the study was that trusting relationships, though fragile and often broken, are subject to the hope of restoration and renewal.

Originality/value

This study provided valuable findings that enhance the understanding of ethical decision making and trust brokering amongst the Canadian school principals. While the discussions of trust and moral agency are certainly present in the educational literature, not much is known about the self‐perceived role of a principal as both a moral agent and trust broker. Moreover, there is perceived need for qualitative studies in the area of trust in educational leadership.

Details

Journal of Educational Administration, vol. 49 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0957-8234

Keywords

Content available
Book part
Publication date: 8 December 2016

Abstract

Details

The Dark Side of Leadership: Identifying and Overcoming Unethical Practice in Organizations
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78635-499-0

Book part
Publication date: 8 December 2016

Keith D. Walker and Benjamin Kutsyuruba

We often hear questions like “What must that leader have been thinking?” “What possessed her to do that?” “That leader needs to give his head a shake!” or “It is so…

Abstract

We often hear questions like “What must that leader have been thinking?” “What possessed her to do that?” “That leader needs to give his head a shake!” or “It is so disappointing to see the pain caused by one wrong-headed and self-serving leader!” This chapter describes how leaders may subtly fall into rationalization, self-justification, foolishness, and callous indifference through maleficent internal narratives. How is it that leaders who have found the favor of others in the service of a great cause (i.e., the education of children and youth) find themselves sucked into clearly wrong or unthinkably bad actions? In this chapter, vicious (non-virtuous) thinking, inner political churnings, unconscious reinforcement of systemic evil, and hurtful ways of influencing others are explored, named, and challenged.

Details

The Dark Side of Leadership: Identifying and Overcoming Unethical Practice in Organizations
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78635-499-0

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 8 June 2012

Benjamin Kutsyuruba

The purpose of this exploratory article is to address the questions of teacher attrition and retention by examining the policies supporting beginning teachers in different…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this exploratory article is to address the questions of teacher attrition and retention by examining the policies supporting beginning teachers in different jurisdictions (provinces and territories) in Canada through teacher induction and mentorship programs.

Design/methodology/approach

This research study relied on the collection of documents as the primary method of data collection. Both policy documents as means of external communication and the informal responses to formal policies by various stakeholders were analyzed in a complementary fashion in this study. The study examined numerous government documents, websites, program/policy memoranda, newsletters, as well as academic reviews pertaining to beginning teacher induction programs across Canada.

Findings

Data analysis revealed significant policy variability across the provinces and localities, with comprehensive induction programs instituted only by the educational authorities in New Brunswick, Ontario, and Northwest Territories. A fundamental building‐block of the induction programs was the creation of a formal mentoring program that matched experienced teachers with teachers who were new to the profession and/or to the province/territory.

Research limitations/implications

Policy makers should consider the implementation of structured induction programs that successfully inculcate new teachers into school cultures and result in decreased teacher attrition and increased retention of beginning teachers. Mentoring is at the core of successful induction programs. Evident in all policy‐mandated induction programs under study was the importance of the school principal's role in effective functioning of mentoring programs. This aspect of the principal's role should be further examined and researched to understand the administrator role in the implementation and functioning of effective induction and mentoring programs for beginning teachers not only in Canada but worldwide.

Practical implications

In considering implementation of teacher induction programs, policymakers need to be aware that comprehensive, intensive support programs for new educators are both an effective and an efficient public investment. If mandated by policies at the macro levels as part of formal induction programs, mentoring programs have the potential to transform schools into collaborative places by establishing a culture of mentoring in schools.

Originality/value

Despite the perceived and actual benefits, government‐instituted induction programs for new teachers are not very common in Canada. While the discussions of such programs are certainly present in the educational literature, this exploratory pan‐Canadian review of induction and mentoring policies has the ability to inform provincial and territorial policymakers about the variability in institutionalizing those programs.

Details

International Journal of Mentoring and Coaching in Education, vol. 1 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2046-6854

Keywords

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