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Educational reorganisation and collegial support: a case study

Hubley-Little, Tamara (2000) Educational reorganisation and collegial support: a case study. Doctoral thesis, Durham University.



Using grounded theory methodology, the case study explores fourteen teachers’ experiences of educational reorganisation. Although the study identifies three distinct groups varying in the support offered for the demerger of Midtown High School, teacher resistance to the change is minimal. A variety of reasons for this are offered, including the nature of the teaching culture. Camaraderie and jocular relationships characterise the ethos that provides a positive experience for the teachers of the site. The study recognises the value of the supportive teaching culture in its ability to reduce stress. Leadership by the principal and a cycle of student to student-teacher to teacher reinforces the supportive teaching culture and ensures its continuance despite inherent communication problems. However, teacher-leaders dissatisfied with the status quo initiated the demerger. Within the second series of semi-structured interviews, the study reveals an improvement in communications and greater teacher empowerment as a result of effective leadership offered by the new principal. However, during the change process, the effect of the reorganisation upon the teaching culture and teacher-leaders was notable. Teacher-leaders who experienced stress during educational reorganisation lost the ability to function in their leadership roles. This affected the collegial relationships of the junior site staff and individual teacher's ability to cope. Teachers with an internal locus of control experienced significant stress when expectations were not met. In arriving at these assertions the role of the teaching culture was central. The effective teaching culture not only relies on effective leadership offered by administrators and teacher-leaders but also collegial relationships that are supportive and jocular in nature. The case study reveals that such a teaching culture, despite its limitations, is a valuable asset to the educational organisation.

Item Type:Thesis (Doctoral)
Award:Doctor of Education
Thesis Date:2000
Copyright:Copyright of this thesis is held by the author
Deposited On:01 Aug 2012 11:43

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