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Article
Publication date: 21 January 2022

Alexandra Papaioannou, Ioanna Papavassiliou-Alexiou and Sofia Moutiaga

This paper investigates the levels of career resilience and self-efficacy of the principals of primary school units, identifies the relationship between them and…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper investigates the levels of career resilience and self-efficacy of the principals of primary school units, identifies the relationship between them and determines the effect of the demographic elements of the sample on their career resilience and self-efficacy.

Design/methodology/approach

The convenient sample of this study was 165 principals from public schools across the prefecture of Central Macedonia. A total of 422 questionnaires were mailed to all principals of kindergarten and elementary schools, accompanied by a personal letter to inform them about the procedure and the purpose of the survey. A pilot survey took place to check the adequacy of and get feedback on the questionnaire. The questionnaire used in the study consisted of three parts: The Career Resilience Scale (CRS) by Kodama (2015), the Principal Self-Efficacy Scale (PSES) by Tschannen-Moran and Gareis (2004) and demographic questions.

Findings

The results of the survey showed that principals have high levels of career resilience and very high levels of self-efficacy. There are four factors that form the levels of career resilience: (a) problem-solving skills (b) social skills (c) interest in innovation and (d) optimism for the future. Demographic factors play a role in shaping career resilience as they affect two of the four factors. There are two factors that shape levels of self-efficacy: (a) self-efficiency in administration and (b) self-efficiency in moral leadership. Demographic factors play a role in shaping the factor of self-efficacy that refers to administration. Finally, there was a high positive correlation and a causal relationship between career resilience and self-efficacy.

Research limitations/implications

The convenient sample used in the present study is a limiting factor, as it may not be representative of Greek primary school principals. Also, research is based on self-evaluation questionnaires, which may show a lack of objectivity, as the answers may reflect the personal worldviews of leaders and particular needs of educational institutions (Sarid, 2021). This fact may not allow us to generalize the results.

Practical implications

The present study showed that resilience and self-efficacy have a causal relationship and that one enhances another, making their relation pivotal for a successful educational leadership. Regarding the professional development of school leaders, educational leadership training programs could be designed and offered by the Greek Ministry of Education (Dexter et al., 2020). Coaching programs and practices that help principals develop social skills, coping mechanisms, emotional capacities and confidence in one's knowledge should be widely introduced. Governments have to take the necessary initiative to ensure that, particularly in adverse contexts, education stimulate and nurture resilience and self-efficacy among citizens, by promoting appropriate lifelong learning programs and by ensuring the continuous training of employees (Renko et al., 2020).

Social implications

Career resilience and self-efficacy ensures economic prosperity in times of crisis, globalization and rapid technology development and may be the best way to create strong and successful leaders. Coaching programs and practices that help principals develop social skills, coping mechanisms, emotional capacities and confidence in one's knowledge should be widely introduced. The results of the present research could prove helpful in developing strategic plans, building networks between organizations to improve communication and flow of information, through employee exchange programs.

Originality/value

This research, which combined career resilience and self-efficacy, took place for the first time in Greece. The CRS by Kodama (2015) was also used for the first time in Greek population.

Details

International Journal of Educational Management, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-354X

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Article
Publication date: 17 January 2022

Pierre Tulowitzki, Julia Gerick and Birgit Eickelmann

Information and communication technologies (ICT) has an increasing impact on schools. School leaders play a key role in this context as drivers of innovation including…

Abstract

Purpose

Information and communication technologies (ICT) has an increasing impact on schools. School leaders play a key role in this context as drivers of innovation including those related to ICT. Against this background, the study presented in this article focuses on school leadership and management activities with ICT and related challenges. It sought to analyze how frequently German school principals use ICT compared to principals in other countries, what distinct clusters of German principals could be identified in terms of ICT usage and how principals viewed ICT in schools and related challenges.

Design/methodology/approach

A mixed-methods approach was chosen, using quantitative data from both the international comparative large-scale assessment study ICILS 2018 and the explorative qualitative data from Germany. For the international comparison, the school principal data sets of the 12 international participants of the International Computer and Information Literacy Study (ICILS) 2018 were taken into account: Chile, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Kazakhstan, Republic of Korea, Luxembourg, Portugal, Uruguay and the United States. To look beyond averaged frequencies, a latent class analysis (LCA) was conducted to identify possible clusters of school leaders with distinct usage patterns of ICT for leadership and management activities.

Findings

The results indicate that, in general, German principals use ICT for leadership and management activities on a similar level as their international colleagues. However, they seem to communicate with education authorities significantly more often than their international colleagues, whereas representative activities (presentations, home page) are rather infrequent. The qualitative data point to significant barriers to fully harnessing the potential of using ICT for leadership, management and school improvement such as lack of competencies and lack of adequate support.

Originality/value

To the best of the authors’ knowledge, this is the first study that focuses on school leadership and management activities using ICT with such a data set. The results provide insights into how German principals use ICT to lead and manage their schools compared to their international counterparts. The qualitative data offers additional insights into possible reasons hindering a more effective use of ICT.

Details

International Journal of Educational Management, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-354X

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Article
Publication date: 24 January 2022

Molly F. Gordon and Holly Hart

The purpose of this paper is to provide concrete examples of what leadership behaviors and strategies look like in high-poverty urban schools in Chicago that are…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to provide concrete examples of what leadership behaviors and strategies look like in high-poverty urban schools in Chicago that are successful at improving student outcomes. The authors compared the strategies used by principals who were rated by their teachers on annual surveys as being strong instructional leaders but had varying success in improving student outcomes for comparison.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper is part of a larger mixed-methods study exploring the link between leadership and student learning. For the qualitative portion of the study, the authors utilized a contrasting case study design (Merriam, 1998) to distinguish leadership practices in schools with improvements in student achievement from practices in schools with stagnating or declining student achievement. The authors conducted case studies in a total of 12 schools–6 schools with improving student achievement and 6 schools with stagnating or declining student achievement. For brevity, the authors chose 4 schools to highlight in this manuscript that best illustrate the findings found across the full sample of 12 schools. The authors coded each interview using both inductive and deductive coding techniques.

Findings

The study findings indicate that there are subtle but important differences between the strategies principals in improving and contrast schools use to lead school improvement efforts. Principals in improving schools were able to create learning environments where staff were open to new ideas and work together towards goals. Principals in improving schools were also more likely to create structures that facilitated organizational learning than principals in contrast schools.

Originality/value

This study is unique because the authors provide concrete examples of what principals do in their schools to help create strong learning climates that foster organizational learning and improvement. The authors also identify differences in leader practices and structures in schools that are having a harder time making improvements for comparison. The study findings can be used by principals and other educators to better understand which of their various efforts may result in stronger school cultures conducive to organizational learning as outlined in Louis' and colleagues' work.

Details

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

Keywords

Open Access
Article
Publication date: 10 December 2021

Johanna Lüddeckens, Lotta Anderson and Daniel Östlund

The aim of this case study is to describe what commitment and actions are needed in the Swedish school so that principals — within the Swedish school policy framework and…

Abstract

Purpose

The aim of this case study is to describe what commitment and actions are needed in the Swedish school so that principals — within the Swedish school policy framework and with the goal of creating an inclusive school culture and practice — can positively affect schooling for students with disabilities, with a particular focus on students with autism spectrum conditions (ASC). Three research questions guide the study: (1) What commitment and actions do principals consider important for developing an inclusive school for all students, with a particular focus on students with ASC? (2) How do the principals reflect on their own leadership in the development of inclusive education, with a particular focus on students with ASC? (3) Based on the results, what are the implications of the study in practice?

Design/methodology/approach

As part of a three-step data collection method, a snowball sampling was conducted in which n = 6 principals were initially interviewed and the data analyzed by an inductive thematic content analysis.

Findings

(1) Certain structures are needed when planning how to develop mutual values when organizing an inclusive school involving students with ASC, (2) the principals could, at times, feel a sense of loneliness in relation to their superiors and decision-makers and (3) more accountability from educators and greater consideration for the student perspective in decision-making are needed.

Practical implications

It was found that (1) certain structures are needed when planning how to develop mutual values when organizing an inclusive school involving students with ASC, (2) the principals could, at times, feel a sense of isolation in relation to their superiors and decision-makers and (3) more accountability from educators and greater consideration for the student perspective in decision-making are needed.

Originality/value

Index for inclusion and elements from the inclusive leadership model were used in the data collection and analysis.

Details

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

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Article
Publication date: 4 January 2022

Hanifi Parlar, Muhammet Emin Türkoğlu and Ramazan Cansoy

This study aims to explore the relationship between authoritarian leadership and commitment and the mediating roles of silence and trust in school principals.

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to explore the relationship between authoritarian leadership and commitment and the mediating roles of silence and trust in school principals.

Design/methodology/approach

This study employed a cross-sectional design to illustrate the relationships among authoritarian leadership, trust in the principal, silence and affective commitment using path analysis evidence provided by 409 K–12 teachers.

Findings

The findings revealed that authoritarian leadership indirectly affected teacher commitment through trust in the principal and acquiescent silence. Furthermore, trust in the principal played a partial mediating role between authoritarian leadership and defensive silence. Authoritarian leadership behaviours decreased teachers' affective commitment by decreasing trust in the principal and increasing organisational silence.

Originality/value

Although leadership and culture have been studied intensively in recent years, authoritarian leadership, which is more commonly seen in Eastern societies, has been less studied in school contexts in the Middle East and Asia. Thus, this study contributes to the literature by examining the factors that might influence affective commitment in schools in an urban setting: authoritarian leadership, silence and trust in school principals.

Details

International Journal of Educational Management, vol. 36 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-354X

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Article
Publication date: 5 September 2016

Linda J. Searby and Denise Armstrong

The purpose of this paper is to introduce readers to the special issue on “middle space” education leaders (those individuals who are second-in-command in schools). The…

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to introduce readers to the special issue on “middle space” education leaders (those individuals who are second-in-command in schools). The special issue contains papers pertaining to mentoring those preparing for and aspiring to the assistant school leader role, as well as papers on programs that support new assistant principals/vice-principals through mentoring and coaching. The authors provide background on middle space leadership and mentoring from existing research literature, introduce the international papers selected for the issue, and identify unifying themes across the papers.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors provide highlights of relevant research literature on the importance of mentoring for school leaders in general, but also specifically address the need for mentoring for middle space leaders from the scant literature that exists on the topic. After reviewing the relevant literature, the authors provide an overview of the seven papers that were chosen for the issue through a rigorous peer-review process.

Findings

The co-editors of this special issue identify common themes that emerged from the papers chosen for the issue. In general, authors note that middle space leaders have unique mentoring and coaching needs, and there are few formal programs that address their needs. However, there is a growing awareness of the need to support assistant principals through structured mentoring programs, as well as preparing and mentoring those who aspire to the position.

Research limitations/implications

The seven papers chosen for the special issue represent a variety of research methodologies. A limitation is that the majority of the studies are qualitative, with small sample populations. However, even with small sample sizes, commonalities can be seen across the studies and across international contexts.

Practical implications

This review summarizes the issues facing middle space leaders in education and how they can be effectively addressed. The global audience that can benefit from engaging with the papers in this special issue includes educational leadership faculty, educational governing bodies, policymakers, school district central office personnel, senior principals, and assistant principals themselves.

Originality/value

This paper and the seven that follow extend the scant research literature in the realm of middle space leaders in education. They provide unique insights – from different international contexts including the USA, Canada, Hong Kong, and New Zealand – into the need for and potential benefits of mentoring and coaching aspiring and new middle space leaders.

Details

International Journal of Mentoring and Coaching in Education, vol. 5 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2046-6854

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Article
Publication date: 1 May 1995

M.T. Hewitson

Reports on a research project which investigated the preparation ofbeginning principals in Queensland primary and secondary governmentschools. Thirty‐six principals

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337

Abstract

Reports on a research project which investigated the preparation of beginning principals in Queensland primary and secondary government schools. Thirty‐six principals completed a questionnaire, a return rate of about 80 per cent. Of these principals, 13 were surveyed early in the second year of their principalship, and 23 in August of their first year. Six of the first‐year principals were interviewed in the following month. Presents an overview of the findings, along with some general observations on their practical implications and recommendations for action.

Details

Journal of Educational Administration, vol. 33 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0957-8234

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Article
Publication date: 1 January 1977

DOUG OGILVIE

At role conferences, high school deputy principals are continually re‐examining their role in the schools. Increasingly, in school level co‐operative evaluation programmes…

Abstract

At role conferences, high school deputy principals are continually re‐examining their role in the schools. Increasingly, in school level co‐operative evaluation programmes they are analyzing their work and its contribution to school effectiveness. This paper attempts to develop a classification that would provide a useful framework within which, at both system level and school level, they might examine their behaviour and consider modifications. From a Queensland study, five dimensions of leader behaviour are identified. They are Consideration, Classroom Facilitation, Staff Utilization, Authoritarianism and Routinisation. Other behaviours identified from the literature are Teacher Classroom Contact and School Management Maintenance tasks. These seven behaviours can involve interaction with either of two groups of people; clients and colleagues, thus providing a 14 segment grid that deputies might use to classify their behaviour when considering what they are doing in schools and what might be done better.

Details

Journal of Educational Administration, vol. 15 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0957-8234

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Article
Publication date: 1 October 1998

Mary M. Harris and Donald J. Willower

Hypotheses on principals’ optimism, teacher perceptions of that optimism, and of school effectiveness were tested. The school was the unit of analysis. Teachers and…

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1255

Abstract

Hypotheses on principals’ optimism, teacher perceptions of that optimism, and of school effectiveness were tested. The school was the unit of analysis. Teachers and principals in 50 secondary schools responded to two standard measures. To avoid same respondent bias, about half of the teachers in each school completed one instrument, half the other. Teacher perceptions of their principal’s optimism and of their school’s effectiveness were correlated, but the principal’s self‐reported optimism was not a predictor of perceived effectiveness. The congruence of teacher perceptions of the principal’s optimism and the measured optimism was associated with perceived school effectiveness. Teachers saw the principals to be less optimistic than the principals scored; however, teacher perceptions of optimism and self‐reported optimism were correlated across schools. We suggested explanations for this unusual combination of significant difference with significant correlation, and for other findings

Details

Journal of Educational Administration, vol. 36 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0957-8234

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Article
Publication date: 1 May 1996

Laurie Brady

Reports on a peer assistance programme for principals involving training, observation and feedback. The sample, from three administrative regions for schooling in NSW…

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967

Abstract

Reports on a peer assistance programme for principals involving training, observation and feedback. The sample, from three administrative regions for schooling in NSW Australia, involved nine pairs of principals, matched by age, experience as a principal and school size. The principals were trained in how and what to observe, and how to provide feedback. They then shadowed each other for two consecutive days prior to providing that feedback. Data were obtained from principal ratings and journals, researcher observation and interviews. Reports the findings in terms of an overall rating by principals, claimed benefits and limitations, the perceived value of training and the criteria for effective matching. Endorses the efficacy of peer assistance as a form of professional development.

Details

Journal of Educational Administration, vol. 34 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0957-8234

Keywords

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