PAST CHANGES AND CURRENT WORK AREAS OF SCHOOL PRINCIPALS: CONCEPTUAL AND EMPIRICAL ANALYSIS
Liepaja University (LATVIA)
About this paper:
Appears in: ICERI2009 Proceedings
Publication year: 2009
Conference name: 2nd International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
Dates: 16-18 November, 2009
Location: Madrid, Spain
Abstract:The paper discusses changes and current work areas of school principals analyzing them from the aspect of sustainable, transformational and distributed leadership. In the context of these theories data of the empirical research are analyzed on past changes in comprehensive schools of Latvia and their work areas which are essential to pay attention to, in order to perform the school’s basic functions and to consider the sustainable development of the school. Any innovations in the educational institution are connected with changes in the school’s structure, culture, strategies and other elements of internal environment of the institution. The analysis of sustainable, transformational and distributed leadership reveals that these theories mutually interact with one another having team work in the basis of this interaction. Team work can serve both as an instrument for change implementation and as a reason for change realization and solution of topical issues; thus the research result analysis consists in the study of changes, current work areas and application of team work principles in the school context.
199 principals of comprehensive schools in Latvia participated in the research. Schools were selected using a stratified sampling method with an aim to represent school population of Latvia (N=992). When sampling a school type proportion in the population and school, location was considered.
The research results show that during the last 6 years changes in comprehensive schools of Latvia mainly were connected with technologies, school strategy, also organizational culture, but less effected school structure. What concerns work areas, it was discovered that school principals have two most topical areas: involvement of the staff in school strategy formulation, and professional development of the staff. It was found out that school principals do not pay much attention to strengthening school traditions. The research states the connection of some past changes and work areas with bibliography of school principals, as well as small but statistically significant connection with team work principle application in the educational institution.
Keywords: leadership, changes, focus areas.