The Impact Of Leadership Styles On Teachers In Primary Schools

Primary Education Project and Semina Material

The Impact Of Leadership Styles On Teachers In Primary Schools

Chapter One


1.1 Background to the Study

“A process whereby a person encourages a group of other individuals to attain a shared purpose,” Northouse (2004) defined leadership. Leadership style, according to Drummond (2002), is the pattern of interactions between leaders and subordinates. According to O’Donnell (1959), leadership is a method of persuading individuals to work toward a common objective. According to Crosby and Bryson (1999), leadership is the act of inspiring and mobilizing people to take collective action in the pursuit of a common objective. It encompasses all approaches and procedures used by leaders to encourage subordinates to execute their orders, such as controlling, directing, and so on. It is a method of influencing individuals in order to reach a particular outcome. According to Armstrong (2004), leadership is concerned with moving people in the proper direction, obtaining their commitment, and encouraging them to achieve their objectives. School leaders (i.e., principals and school boards) are expected to have the ability to influence teachers, parents, and other education stakeholders to ensure that their schools achieve their intended goals by ensuring that teachers perform well in their responsibilities and students perform well in their academics as expected. The manner a manager performs leadership tasks, as well as how he or she interacts with members of the group, is referred to as leadership style (Mullins, 2006). Leadership styles can be described in a variety of ways. There are three fundamental leadership types, according to Mullins (2006): authoritarian, laissez faire, and democratic. The primary distinction between these types is where the decision-making function is located. The autocratic leadership style is characterized by a concentration of authority inside the group rather than toward the manager. The manager is the only one who makes decisions and has power over policy, processes for attaining goals, work duties and relationships, and reward and punishment management. The Democratic leadership style places a higher emphasis on group engagement and the concentration of power within the group as a whole. Members of the group share leadership responsibilities, and the manager is more of a team player. Members of the group have a bigger say in decision-making, policy formulation, and system and process implementation. The manager watches the members of the group operating effectively on their own under a laissez-faire leadership style. The manager actively takes decisions to delegate authority to members, allowing them the freedom to behave as they see fit; and not to interfere, but to be immediately available if assistance is required. The leadership style employed at the school level is critical in boosting teacher morale. Low teacher morale, according to Hollinger (2010), inhibits interaction with colleagues and students, reduces productivity, affects student learning, and encourages cynicism. Students flourish socially and intellectually when teacher morale is high and the faculty of culture is strong, he says. Furthermore, teachers work together and produce results, and the social atmosphere is vibrant and interesting. Despite the importance of leaders in affecting teacher morale, other factors (e.g., remuneration, students’ unethical behavior) have also had an impact on teacher morale, such as low pay. The viewpoint is supported by the 2012 teachers’ strike. According to Omari (2013), while all of this is going on, the ministry’s public relations department appears to be doing nothing to support teachers. Another observation reveals that even people of the community demoralize instructors.

1.2 Statement of the Problem

When the responsibilities placed on teachers today are considered, school environment and teacher morale become important concerns that school officials must address. One of the school leader’s responsibilities is to establish a school climate in which the classroom teacher feels comfortable and confident in her ability to do her job (Rajan, 2012). Because teachers make up the majority of a school’s professional staff, it’s critical that they have a good attitude. Other teachers’ behaviors, attitudes, and actions can have a significant impact on a school’s overall teacher morale (Omari, 2013). Teachers with high morale tend to work in schools with an environment that encourages a higher degree of dedication from the whole workforce (Lester, 1990). Conversely, schools with poor teacher morale tend to have an apathetic culture, which can stymie school progress and student development (Hardy, 1999). Teacher morale has the ability to influence the overall atmosphere or environment of a school; consequently, in order for pupils to have the best chance of succeeding, teacher morale must be high. However, it has been noticed that most elementary schools in Nigeria, particularly those run by the government, are experiencing a lack of teacher morale as a result of leadership styles. According to Hollinger (2010), effective and supportive leadership contribute considerably to strong teacher morale, whereas poor, or unsupportive leadership, results in low teacher morale. The motivation of teachers to work is critical for students’ successful learning and performance. Effective and supportive leadership influences teacher morale through encouraging and guiding them on what to do, listening to their experiences and recommendations, and so defending them in their challenges.

1.3 Objectives of the Study

The fundamental goal of this study is to determine the impact of leadership styles on teacher morale in primary schools. More specifically, the study will:

  1. Examine the leadership styles used in primary schools.
  2. Examine the instructors’ perspectives on the leadership styles that have been used.
  3. Investigate the many ways in which the leadership style in use affects teacher morale.
  4. Determine the most effective leadership style(s) for influencing teacher morale at work.

1.4 Research Questions

  1. What are the leadership styles used in primary schools?
  2. What are the instructors’ perspectives on the leadership styles that have been used?
  3. What are many ways in which the leadership style in use affects teacher morale?
  4. What is the most effective leadership style(s) for influencing teacher morale at work?

1.5 Significance of the Study

This study will aid school officials, such as Education Officers, as well as regional and other important stakeholders, in identifying and developing policies and methods to enhance leadership styles and teacher morale. Furthermore, this research will assist head teachers in identifying certain leadership styles to be adopted, as well as strategies to improve teacher morale and satisfaction in the classroom.

1.6 Scope of the Study

This study will be undertaken in Ondo State, with public elementary schools in the Owo LGA serving as the case study.

1.7 Delimitation of the Study

Obtaining funding for general research activity will be difficult over the course of studies. Correspondents may also be unable or unwilling to complete or submit the questionnaires that have been sent to them. However, it is expected that these limits will be overcome by making the greatest use of existing resources and devoting more time to research than is required. As a result, it is firmly considered that, despite these constraints, their effect on this research report will be minor, allowing the study’s purpose and importance to be met.

1.8 Definition of Terms

Leadership Style:

The manner in which a manager performs his or her duties as a leader, as well as the manner in which he or she interacts with members of the group (Mullins, 2006). Authoritative style, Democratic style, and Laissez-faire style are the three types of leadership styles. Democratic leadership style, according to Bass (2000), occurs when leaders “broaden and elevate the interests of their employees, when they generate awareness and acceptance of the group’s purposes and mission, and when they stir their employees to look beyond their own self-interest for the group’s good.”

Teacher Morale:

Teacher morale is defined as the degree to which a teacher’s requirements are met, as well as the teacher’s perspective of how the employment environment contributes to the worker’s happiness. The author goes on to say that when an employee’s morale is poor, they will participate less, to the point where they will only accomplish ten percent of what is necessary or the bare minimum. When morale is good, people are more likely to be excited about their job and to contribute with a feeling of dedication.

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Frequently Asked Questions

How does leadership style affect academic performance?

Even though respondents agreed that a leadership style can affect academic performance, the headmasters do not gain the confidence of the stakeholders enough in order to build terms that can enhance quality of teaching and learning. Based on these establishments, it was recommended that teacher training

Do school leaders affect student achievement?

Although some research has indicated that school leaders have an indirect effect on student achievement, there are indeed identified leadership traits that are more conducive to increasing student performance by enhancing working conditions and the educational environment.

Why is leadership important in education?

But educators who exemplify leadership skills within the field are able to make an even greater impact. Teachers who learn to translate their successful classroom practices into a shared vision that can help drive the school, the district or even the industry forward can benefit students far beyond their classrooms.

What is instructional leadership in education?

Many teachers excel in classroom instruction, but instructional leadership goes beyond being a great teacher in the classroom. Educators who are adept in instructional leadership also prioritize sharing effective teaching practices with others, leveraging technology when appropriate. 

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