Principal succession: The socialisation of a primary school principal in South Africa
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Keywords

principal succession
primary school
reputation
headmaster

Abstract

This study focussed on the socialisation of a new principal in a South African primary school with a strong Christian culture. He was appointed when the predecessor retired after more than two decades. The conceptual framework focuses on the three phases of socialisation: professional socialisation, organisational socialisation and occupational identity, which are used to interpret the study. A qualitative study, which occurred during two phases, investigated the phenomenon, principal succession, in the particular school. The data collection methods included a number of interviews with the principal, a focus group interview with staff members who experienced the previous principal’s leadership practice, and individual interviews with staff members. The following categories emerged from the data analysis: Recalling the previous principal: ‘One sees Mr X [the predecessor] everywhere’; Entry and orientation: ‘I found it intimidating initially’; and Immersion and reshaping: ‘Reins that previously were a bit slack, he is now pulling tight’.

Die sosialisering van ’n primêre skoolhoof in Suid-Afrika. Hierdie studie het gefokus op die sosialisering van ’n nuwe skoolhoof in ’n Suid-Afrikaanse primêre skool met ’n sterk Christelike kultuur. Hy is aangestel toe sy voorganger ná meer as twee dekades afgetree het. Die konseptuele raamwerk, wat gebruik is om die bevindinge te interpreteer, het op die drie fases van sosialisering gefokus, naamlik professionele sosialisering, organisatoriese sosialisering en beroepsidentiteit. ’n Kwalitatiewe ondersoek na die skoolhoofopvolgingverskynsel in die bepaalde skool is in twee fases gedoen. Die data-insamelingsmetodes het ’n aantal onderhoude met die skoolhoof, ’n fokusgroeponderhoud met personeellede wat ook onder leierskap van die vorige skoolhoof gewerk het en individuele onderhoude met personeellede ingesluit. Tydens die data-analise het die volgende kategorieë na vore gekom: Herinnering aan die vorige skoolhoof: ‘’n Mens sien Mnr X [die voorganger] oral’; Aanvaarding en oriëntasie: ‘Ek het dit aanvanklik intimiderend gevind’; en Immersie en hervorming: ‘Leisels wat voorheen ’n bietjie slap was, het hy nou styfgetrek’.

https://doi.org/10.4102/koers.v78i1.426
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