Paradoxes of Managerialist Practice

  • Chris Dolan
Part of the Educational Leadership Theory book series (ELT)


Marlon, from Sullivan School, claims succinctly that ‘leadership comes from the principal’, while his colleague, Samuel, says that principals who ‘lead from the front’ have most impact and ‘that you can’t have an effective school without an effective principal’. While these confident assertions suggest a set of practices that are readily discernible as those of the leader, they are confounded somewhat by a strong tendency, amongst participants in my research, towards more nebulous descriptions of busyness and importance. The principalship was variously described as ‘quite a juggling act’ (Levon, Sullivan School Governing Council member), ‘where all the threads come together’ (Mac, Caldicott School), ‘the focal point for the school community’ (Clive, Heatherbank School Governing Council Member) and ‘where the buck stops in actual fact’ (Richard, McCullough School). More metaphorically Hillary, from Lawson School, claims:


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  • Chris Dolan
    • 1
  1. 1.University of South AustraliaAdelaideAustralia

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