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Leadership in the primary Catholic school in the West Midlands

Gould, Rachel Amanda (2016)
Ed.D. thesis, University of Birmingham.

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Since the year 2000 there has been a statistically high proportion of head teachers’ leaving the profession. There have been studies conducted to predict when this exodus would conclude, but not the actual reasons for why senior people are leaving. Schools have found replacing head teachers’ increasingly difficult and the inevitable leadership crisis has been well documented by authors, such as Dorman and D’ Arbon (2003) and Harris (2007) alongside many articles in the media. The leadership crisis has been most noticeable within the Catholic Primary School sector.
This thesis identifies the leadership crisis from the negativity of the education system with possible supporting solutions, such as the value of acting headship, succession planning and talent spotting.
This research journey started with a questionnaire with eighty senior leadership teams within Catholic Primary schools (English West Midlands) and progressed to interviewing fifteen senior leaders, pooled from five head teachers; four deputy heads, three assistant heads and three middle leaders. The research was conducted from September 2011 to June 2014.
This study captures the importance of succession planning and expectations on faith school head teachers having many aspects adding to the working week. Accountability and workload issues are adding increasing pressure on a heads’ shoulders which is putting many senior leaders off.
The research concluded that any future succession planning should include opportunities for acting headship. The other emerging theme was the impact of OFSTED, especially in relation to the workload levels and the accountability of senior leader.

Type of Work:Ed.D. thesis.
Supervisor(s):Bisschoff, Thomas and Martin, Jane and Rhodes, Christopher
School/Faculty:Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Social Sciences
Department:The School of Education
Subjects:LB1501 Primary Education
Institution:University of Birmingham
ID Code:6820
This unpublished thesis/dissertation is copyright of the author and/or third parties. The intellectual property rights of the author or third parties in respect of this work are as defined by The Copyright Designs and Patents Act 1988 or as modified by any successor legislation. Any use made of information contained in this thesis/dissertation must be in accordance with that legislation and must be properly acknowledged. Further distribution or reproduction in any format is prohibited without the permission of the copyright holder.
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