AN INVESTIGATION OF MANAGEMENT ROLE AND PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT NEEDS OF SECTIONAL HEADS OF THE SELECTED SCHOOLS IN THE COLOMBO DISTRICT IN SRI LANKA
Sectional heads perform an important role in teaching, and managing teaching- learning process in the government schools in Sri Lanka. However there is no clear definition for the sectional head’s role and responsibilities in school. In some occasions, sectional heads, their principal and deputy principals do not have better understanding of role expectations and professional development needs of sectional heads. Therefore the aim of this study was to explore the sectional head’s role and professional development needs of sectional heads, and in order to accomplish the aim of this study the perceptions and insights of the principals and deputy principals were explored. Five schools were selected randomly in this study, and random sampling method was employed to select ten senior sectional heads and five deputy principals. Five principals were selected purposely from five government schools (National Schools) located in the Colombo district. Semi structured interviews were used to collect information from participants and the thematic analytical approach was employed to analyze the data gathered. The sectional head’s role was broad and varied from school to school and section to section. Time was a key problem that the sectional heads faced in performing their roles. Sectional heads required support in induction into the management role in the school. With regard to professional development needs, there was a lack of agreement between the perceptions of sectional heads, principals and deputy principals. Orientation programmes for sectional heads in government schools should be developed at both zonal and school levels to fulfill their lack of knowledge and experiences of school management. Such orientation programmes are recommended to evaluate the existing role, and identify the development needs of sectional heads in schools.
Key Words: Professional Development, Sectional Head’s Role, Management Development Programmes, Professional Leadership
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