Africana Journal Articles



PSYCHODYNAMICS IN SCHOOL LEADERSHIP: CHALLENGES AND OPPORTUNITIES

Abstract


In recent times, leadership has been touted as a key determinant of organizational performance. Ideas on effective leadership are fronted in conferences, workshops, webinars and lecture halls. The ideological agora is awash in theories of and approaches to leadership that are presented as magic wands for effective leadership. Yet, in spite of the sea of ink spilled on the leadership discourse, societies continue to reel under the burden of poor leadership. There is a marked leadership deficit in the world today as global leaders spend their energies pushing sectarian interests that risk tearing the global community asunder. This book argues that unless leaders pay attention to the ‘inner theatre’ – the psychological script on the basis of which they act – all the leadership discourse will amount to nothing more than sound and fury signifying nothing. The psychodynamic framework of leadership invites leaders to take the road less travelled, the journey toward the interior, in order to discover the unconscious desires and fears that orient their attitude and motivate their action as persons and as leaders. The book applies psychodynamics to educational leadership. It argues that school leaders have the primary responsibility to lead staff and students toward their own interiority, for any voyage of discovery has to culminate in the discovery of the self. The book tackles concrete problems facing principals in schools today: lack of motivation on the part of teachers and support staff, negative ethnicity, religious discrimination, lack of human and financial resources, political interference, moonlighting and disruptive psychological contracts, among many others. On the basis of psychodynamics and various leadership theories, the book offers suggestions as to how these challenges can be addressed. The book also observes that leadership is inextricably understood and exercised within a cultural matrix. It is important, therefore, to inculturate educational leadership. Further, the school community is also identified as a strategic institution for advancing the cause of environmental stewardship. Practical suggestions to that effect are also proffered.

Keywords


School leadership; School adminsitration

Citation