Date of Award

1990

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy

School

School of Education

Program

Higher Education Administration PhD

First Advisor

Edward A. Streeter

Second Advisor

David S. Penner

Third Advisor

Asa C. Thoresen

Abstract

Problem. If schools are to improve and become more accountable to the community they serve, relevant leadership training programs that help principals to function more effectively need to be provided. It is important that such training programs address the problems and needs of the principals. The purpose of this study was to identify and describe the leadership training needs as perceived by the secondary-school principals of Fiji.

Method. A descriptive survey design was utilized for this study. The Leadership Training Needs questionnaire was sent to all 140 secondary-school principals in Fiji to survey (1) their perceived needs for leadership training, (2) past sources of leadership expertise, (3) sources of assistance for principals, and (4) demographic characteristics. The 110 completed returns were processed by the Andrews University Center for Statistical Services. The SPSS computer program was used in the analysis which yielded frequency, percentages of responses, and mean weight for each of the eight categories of demographic data .

Findings.

1. Educational authors studying school leadership since the early 1970s generally agreed that effective schools were the result of the activities of effective principals who demonstrated strong instructional leadership, created positive school climate conducive to learning, and knew how to manage time and people efficiently and effectively.

2. Secondary-school principals in Fiji expressed high priority need for additional leadership training in the skills of instructional leadership and human relations/staff development.

3. The principals who most often expressed the need for additional leadership training were those who were (1) under 40 years of age; (2) Fijian; (3) assigned to medium-sized schools; (4) in charge of secondary high schools; and (5) who had the most recent educational training.

4. Secondary-school principals of Fiji reported that on-the-job experience, teaching experience, and deputy-principalship were their most valuable sources of leadership expertise.

5. In-service training and taking courses at colleges or universities were seen by the Fiji principals as effective sources of assistance in improving leadership skills.

Conclusions. Secondary-school principals in Fiji are not satisfied with their present level of leadership expertise. While they consider their experience as administrators to be their most valuable source of leadership expertise, they look toward in-service training, and college and university course work as potentially effective means of improving leadership skills.

Subject Area

High school principals--Fiji.

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