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Effective Leadership Characteristics: What are the Practices And Challenges in Secondary Schools In Tanzania?

Perpetua J Urio*

Abstract

This paper explores effective leadership characteristics, focusing on practices and challenges in secondary education in Tanzania. The study was conducted in Morogoro Region, using a sample of 59 respondents from four secondary schools. The study used qualitative approach. Data was collected through interviews and focus group discussions, and was later subjected to content analysis. Study findings revealed that effective leadership characteristics are perceived differently by respondents in the two categories of schools involved in the study. Leaders in best performing schools demonstrate effective leadership characteristics as opposed to worst performing schools. Contextual factors
associated with internal and external environment, such as shortage of recourses, coupled with low support from community, low motivated teachers and interference of politics in education affect leaders’ practices in the two categories of schools differently, with greater severity observed in worst-performing school. Following these findings, it is necessary, therefore, to provide school leaders with adequate resources to enable them cope with
increasing diversified and demanding job responsibilities. They should also be given more skills so as to be able to analyse their environment. Effective leadership with transformational characteristics and skills in Tanzania is crucial in transforming inputs into outputs and outcomes for realization of quality education.

Keywords

effective leadership, contextual factors, transformational characteristics, leadership practices, school leadership

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