Over the past two decades, risk in education has stimulated increasing attention and prominence, with principals bearing responsibility and liability for ‘managing’ risk in schools. As a consequence, compulsory risk compliance régimes have become increasingly complex, technical and time-consuming. This article focuses on the responses of principals to issues surrounding ‘risk’ and suggests that some risk processes themselves may be inherently risky. Principals fear that risk management régimes can incur professional and personal danger while ignoring some commonly known, politically sensitive, ‘risky’ areas. The article considers the scope of risk in schools before turning to ‘undiscussables’: how risk management puts principals at risk, and issues surrounding leaders as risk. Principals’ concerns about marginalization from systemic risk decision-making, the individuation of risk management responsibility and suggestions for action are discussed, along with areas for future research.
Field of Research
139999 Education not elsewhere classified
Socio Economic Objective
930401 Management and Leadership of Schools/Institutions
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