STAKEHOLDERS’ PERCEPTION ON PRINCIPALS’ LEADERSHIP STYLE PRACTICES IN SECONDARY SCHOOLS

Abstract

This study examined the stakeholders’ perception of the leadership rates of school principals in the north-central geographical area of Nigeria. Nine objectives of the study were set to examine stakeholders’ perceptions of democratic leadership style practices in secondary schools, participants’ perceptions of autocratic leadership style practices in secondary schools, stakeholders’ perceptions of transformative leadership style practices in secondary schools, and, to assess the stakeholders’ perception of transactional leadership style practices in secondary schools and to examine the stakeholders’ perceptions of charismatic leadership style practices in secondary schools in the north central geographical area, Nigeria. The relevant literature of this study has been reviewed. The study was a descriptive survey. The study population included a total population of 92,089 people, including 3,167 principals, 61,825 teachers, 1,665 officials of the Ministry of Education and 25,432 public sector employees. The total sample size was one thousand four hundred and twenty-six 1,426. The universal exhibition

the sample size included 345 principals, 382 teachers, 321 MOD representatives and 378 PTA representatives. The self-structured questionnaire entitled “Perception of secondary school principals” was used to extract the respondents’ answers. This was a pilot trial in two secondary schools outside the sampling schools with a confidentiality coefficient of 0.72 using the split half test. The respondents’ perceptions were analyzed using frequency numbers for the research questions and an analysis of variance (Anova) for the hypotheses in order to express the results of the results. The results demonstrated that a democratic leadership style put into practice the experience, vital contributions and ideas of subordinates; the speakers considered that senior managers practicing a transformational leadership style showed their concern for the needs and feelings of the staff through the well-being of the staff. Conclusions have been adopted that include that the dominant leadership style of the executives of the zone is a democratic leadership style where the executives focus on the experience, contribution and ideas of others to work with. Executives who practiced the transactional leadership style encouraged teamwork within the staff and between students, which helped to facilitate the execution of tasks. The study recommends, among other things, that managers practicing a democratic leadership style document all the ideas, experiences of subordinates gathered as a work policy in paper and electronic copies that strengthen the continuity of the policy, so that administrators should switch to

transformative approaches to leadership effectiveness in order to motivate employees and strengthen

improving the performance of student schools in the central geographical area of northern Nigeria.

CHAPTER ONE

Introduction

1.1 background of the study

The secondary school system is a formal organization managed by principals. Thus, the principals are considered the general director of the school, who is responsible for everything that happens at the school. As general director, the directors assign tasks to those who can perform functions, although all responsibilities still fall on him as an accountant. It was in this regard that the researcher found that effective leadership involves the control of human and material resources at school. Educational institutions are critical places where future generations are educated and school leaders bear a heavy burden of responsibility for their institutions. The leaders of educational institutions are the same as the leaders of other organizations and inevitably face challenges in maintaining the goals of the institutions. The researcher therefore believes that leadership is a way to influence people to work hard with passion to achieve the company’s goals.

To be a school principal, principals must have certain management skills, which are generally considered characteristics of successful leaders. These skills are summarized as follows: leadership skills: they mainly concern non-tangible things, such as vision, confidence, purpose, inspiration and attitude. These include human resource management by assessing the strengths and weaknesses of each member of an organization; they are primarily intended to direct people and lead them to the achievement of common goals. Interpersonal skills: this includes working with people of different backgrounds and degrees. School leadership is the process of encouraging and helping teachers and students to

work with enthusiasm to achieve the school’s goals (educational goals).

Teachers believe that school administration is necessary for everyone. Most importantly, executives are endowed with some kind of appropriate knowledge and leadership skills to perform the tasks assigned to them. The question of leadership style is a major and fundamental concern for all organizations and institutions in different countries. The researcher is therefore of the opinion that school leaders must adopt different leadership styles or that they present different behavioral models that can help them perform their duties effectively, because a leadership style is a critical factor that can affect the performance of a school. In an autocratic leadership style, a leader is considered as one who orders and expects compliance, who is dogmatic and positive, and who leads thanks to his ability to restrain or reward and punish. Democratic leadership offers guidance to lead members, but they also participate in the group and allow contributions from other members of the group. Democratic leaders are encouraging group members to participate, but are retaining the final say on the decision-making process. This type of leadership does not act without subordination. Transformational leadership is driven by motivation. Transformational leadership provides additional ordinary motivation by eliciting ideas for followers, moral values and inspiring them to think about problems in a new way.

The leadership style is based on the idea that the relationships between followers-leaders are based on negotiation, exchange and the contractual dimension. The transactional leader displays both constructive actions, rewards and a corrective dimension, absorbing management as an exception, including the classification of the work required to receive rewards.

The visionary leadership style involves leaders who know that the methods, steps and process of leadership are achieved with and by people. A visionary leader has the ability to create a vision that connects people to each other. However, visionary leaders must be able to bring others together in the vision.

 

The situational leadership style is influenced by leaders who choose the best course of action based on situations or circumstances. In a situational leadership style, leaders “can only be effective if they are in the right place at the right time. Paternalistic leadership involves a management approach involving a dominant authority figure considered a patriarch or matriarch and treats employees and partners as if they were part of a large family.

According to Jumare (2015) leadership is termed as one of the most important aspect in achieving organizational goals, while Michael (1979) as cited in Jumare (2015) sees leadership as an activity that consists of influencing other people‟s behaviors individually or group towards the achievement of desired objectives. It is therefore not surprising that stakeholders are mounting pressure on effective leadership among principals of secondary schools in North Central Geographical Zone of Nigeria. It seems however that many principals have not considered their styles of leadership in administration of schools. As such, leadership style occupies an important position in schools administration in North Central Geographical Zone. Over time, researchers have proposed many different styles of leadership as there is no particular style of leadership that can be considered universal. The researcher is therefore of the opinion that despite the many diverse styles of leadership, a good effective leader will inspire, motivate and direct activities to help achieve group or organizational goals in secondary schools.

Okumbe (2008) wrote that leadership styles refer to a particular behavior applied by the leader to motivate his or her subordinates to achieve the objectives of the organization. The styles are usually identified as autocratic known as authoritative, democratic also known as participative, laissez faire or free-rein bureaucratic and transactional styles. Principals leadership in schools organization is important because it is responsible for providing direction, support to members of staff, students and parents.

Yusuf (2010) opines that stakeholders are people, group or organization that has interest or concern in an organization. Stakeholders can affect or be affected by the organization‟s actions, objectives and policies. However, he further stressed that stakeholder in education is someone who has vested interest in the success and welfare of schools or education system. This includes all parties that are directly affected by the success or failure of an educational system as well as those indirectly affected. He further enumerates some of   these stakeholders as schools board members, administrators and teachers, all these people want their work to have positive impact on the students and their jobs are directly affected by the success of the schools system. Parents desire a successful education system for their children, while the students themselves have an interest in receiving a good education, the ministry of education officials, also identify community as a whole as a stakeholder in education system because schools are located within the community. A solid education program builds a stronger community by better preparing its students to be successful community members.

More so, parents, teachers and officials of ministry of education viewed principals‟s choice of leadership style as having a direct effect in school administration and class room practice. Schools success through schools capacity involves leadership decisions that include parents, teachers, ministry officials and students in the process of problem-solving. The schools in which parents, teachers collaborate in problem solving aid students conduct. (King and Newmann, 2001).

1.2 Statement of the Problem

For many years, in North Central Geographical Zone, Nigerians who have a stake in education expect schools to be effective and successful in a bid to achieve the educational goals. To effectively run the administration of secondary school, the principals is central in setting the tone of the school. The principals is to employ leadership style, which will ensure smooth running of the administration. However, principals exhibits leadership style that reduces involvement of teaches in decision which often results in conflict of interest among teachers and principals.

Leaders of secondary schools, who are the executive administrators  and managers,must possess certain leadership styles that will enable them run their schools successfully.

These styles include: Democratic, Autocratic, Transformational, Transactional, Visionary, Situational, Paternalistic, Inspirational and Charismatic leadership styles among others. It is assumed that the principals’s leadership behaviour influence teachers engagement with students which result shows in students performance. Teachers and students react positively and otherwise in the school when the principals is seen to be either democratic, visionary or transformational in behaviour. The major concern of the education stakeholders is the effectiveness and conducive climate for teaching and learning in the school to be successful. However, there is an expressed public concern by education stakeholders in particular, that the educational system in North Central Geographical Zone is riddled with serious problems linked to poor Leadership behaviour by the principals which leads to: Conflict between principals and

teachers, teachers’ truancy without apparent reason, poor attendance of teachers, mismanagement of school funds, fight between teachers and students, taking decisions without consulting other management staff, late coming of staff and lack of dedication, laziness and poor attitude towards teaching, absence of staff motivation, inadequate supervision, limited professional development opportunities, absence of leadership prestige by principals, and poor management of discipline which affects the school’s overall performance.

Cases of indiscipline relating to breach of school rules and regulations, cases like lateness to school, absenteeism and wearing non-uniform dresses and every other misbehavior has become rampant in our secondary schools with reference to the North Central Geographical Zone, Nigeria. In a school where they set aside the rules and regulations and do what they like and undone what they are expected to do is just like a state where laws, orderliness and authorities are broken down and Abbasialiya (2010) suggested that principals‟ leadership style should be such that can address the issues of discipline among students.

In another light, teachers are also involved in cases of indiscipline which involve sexual harassment from the male teachers, poor attitude to work and lateness to work to mention but few. In most cases principals are found not to delegate duties to the teachers because of their personal attitude towards delegation such as, fear of teachers making mistakes.

Education stakeholders insists in the appointment of a qualified and all round mannered persons as the principals, since the principals’s leadership behaviour enhances effectiveness of teachers and students performance. Therefore, principals’ leadership style used in the school have a direct effect on both the teachers and students since they work under the leadership of the principals. It is in this light that this study was carried out to assess the stakeholders perceptions on principals‟ Leadership style practices in secondary schools in North Central Geographical Zone, Nigeria.

1.3 Objectives of the Study

The main objective of the study is to assess stakeholders‟ perceptions on principals‟ leadership style practices in secondary schools in North Central Geographical Zone in Nigeria.

The Specific Objectives are to:

  1. Examine stakeholders‟ perceptions on principals‟ democratic Leadership style practices in secondary schools in North Central Geographical Zone, Nigeria;
  2. Assess stakeholders‟ perceptions on principals‟ autocratic Leadership style practices in secondary schools in North Central Geographical Zone, Nigeria;
  3. Examine stakeholders‟ perceptions on principals‟ transformational Leadership style practices in secondary schools in North Central Geographical Zone, Nigeria;
  4. Assess the stakeholders‟ perceptions on principals‟ transactional Leadership style practices in secondary schools in North Central Geographical Zone, Nigeria;
  5. Assess the stakeholders‟ perceptions on principals‟ visionary Leadership style practices in secondary schools in North Central Geographical Zone, Nigeria;
  6. Examine the stakeholders‟ perceptions on principals‟ situational Leadership style practices in secondary schools in North Central Geographical Zone, Nigeria;
  7. Assess the stakeholders‟ perceptions of principals‟ paternalistic Leadership style practices in secondary schools in North Central Geographical Zone, Nigeria;
  8. Examine the stakeholders‟ perceptions on principals‟ inspirational Leadership style practices in secondary schools in North Central Geographical Zone, Nigeria; and
  9. Examine the Stakeholders‟ perceptions on principals‟ charismatic Leadership style

practices in secondary schools in North Central Geographical Zone, Nigeria.

1.4 Research Questions

The following questions were sought to guide the researcher in the course of carrying out the research.

  1. In what ways do stakeholders‟ perceive principals‟ democratic Leadership style practices in secondary schools in North Central Geographical Zone, Nigeria?
  2. To what extent do stakeholders perceive principals‟ autocratic Leadership style practices in secondary schools in North Central Geographical Zone, Nigeria?
  3. How do the stakeholders perceive principals‟ transformational Leadership style practices in secondary schools in North Central Geographical Zone, Nigeria?
  4. To what extent do stakeholders perceive principals‟ transactional Leadership style practices in secondary schools in North Central Geographical Zone, Nigeria?
  5. To find out how do stakeholders perceive principals‟ visionary Leadership style practices in secondary schools in North Central Geographical Zone, Nigeria?
  6. In what ways do the stakeholders perceive principals‟ situational Leadership style practices in secondary schools in North Central Geographical Zone, Nigeria?
  7. How do the stakeholders perceive principals‟ paternalistic Leadership style practices in secondary schools in North Central Geographical Zone, Nigeria?
  8. To find out how the stakeholders perceive principals‟ inspirational Leadership style practices in secondary schools in North Central Geographical Zone, Nigeria?
  9. To what extent do the stakeholders perceive principals‟ charismatic Leadership style practices in secondary schools in North Central Geographical Zone, Nigeria?

1.5 Research Hypotheses

The following null hypotheses were formulated for the study:

Ho1 There is no significant difference among the perceptions of principals, teachers, officials of Ministry of Education and PTA officials on principals‟ democratic Leadership style practices in secondary schools in North Central Geographical Zone, Nigeria;

Ho2 There is no significant difference among the perceptions of principals, teachers, officials of Ministry of Education and PTA official‟s on principals‟ autocratic Leadership style practices in secondary schools in North Central Geographical Zone, Nigeria;

Ho3 There is no significant difference among the perceptions of principals, teachers, officials of Ministry of Education and PTA officials on principals‟ transformational Leadership style practices in secondary schools in North Central Geographical Zone, Nigeria;

Ho4 There is no significant difference among the perceptions of principals, teachers, officials of Ministry of Education and PTA officials on principals‟ transactional Leadership style practices in secondary schools in North Central Geographical Zone, Nigeria;

Ho5 There is no significant difference among the perceptions of principals, teachers, officials of Ministry of Education and PTA officials on principals‟ visionary Leadership style practices in secondary schools in North Central Geographical Zone, Nigeria;

Ho6 There is no significant difference among the perceptions of principals, teacher‟s, officials of Ministry of Education and PTA officials on principals‟ situational  Leadership style practices in secondary schools in North Central Geographical Zone, Nigeria;

Ho7 There is no significant difference among the perceptions of principals, teacher‟s, officials of Ministry of Education and PTA officials on principals‟ paternalistic style and practice in secondary schools in North Central Geographical Zone, Nigeria;

Ho8 There is no significant difference among the perceptions of principals, teacher‟s, officials of Ministry of Education and PTA officials on principals‟ inspirational Leadership style practices in secondary schools in North Central Geographical Zone, Nigeria; and

Ho9 There is no significant difference among the perceptions of principals, teacher‟s, officials of Ministry of Education and PTA officials on principals‟ charismatic Leadership style practices in secondary schools in North Central Geographical Zone, Nigeria.

1.6 Basic Assumptions

The study was on the assumptions that:

  1. Democratic Principals Leadership style practices help principals to collect ideas and put them to open discussion;
  2. Stakeholders perceive autocratic Leadership style practices when staff and students are not free with the principals;
  3. Transformational Principals‟ Leadership style practices are used to create a good working conditions and favorable climate for teachers to perform effectively;
  4. Transactional Principals‟ Leadership style practices are used to encourage team work among teachers when carrying out their responsibilities as expected;
  5. Visionary Leadership style practices increased awarenes of the school policies to all stakeholders;
  6. Situational Principals‟ Leadership style practices enable the principals to use different styles as the need arises in the school;
  7. Stakeholders perceive paternalistic Leadership style practices are used in treating staff and students as one family in the school;.
  8. Inspirational School Principals‟ Leadership style practices are seen when principals influences the teachers and students to good works through his action.
  9. Charismatic Principals‟ Leadership style practices are seen to be effective as staff and

students are innovated through the principals humility and diligence.

1.7 Significance of the Study

The principals are beneficiary of this study through organization of workshop, conference and leadership training programs likewise, the teachers are going to benefit from the study through in-house workshop on leadership styles, publication of the research in educational journals, periodicals and conference. The officials of the ministry of education are going to benefit from the study through publication of the work in Journals, Online uploading of the research work, workshop and seminars. Parents Teachers Association are also beneficiary of this research through publication of the research in journals, periodicals and in-house workshop on leadership skill and style that would help them to have in-depth knowledge on leadership styles.

1.8 Scope of Study

The study examined stakeholders‟ perceptions on principals‟ Leadership style practices in secondary schools in North Central Geographical Zone of Nigeria. The study is limited to officials of Ministry of Education, Principals, Teachers, and PTA officials in secondary schools in North Central Geographical Zone. The entire Zone was given fair representation.

The researcher does not unrealistically merit or demerit any principals or any person that will be subjected in the study. However, the study survey the perceptions of stakeholders on Leadership style practices of Principals in selected secondary schools in the North Central Geographical Zone, with a view of improving them. These styles include: Democratic, Autocratic, Transformational, Transactional, Visionary, Situational, Paternalistic, Inspirational and Charismatic leadership styles. However, the North Central Geographical Zone of Nigeria comprise of 7 states namely: Kogi, Kwara, Niger, Nassarawa, Plateau, Benue and FCT Abuja.

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