Deakin University

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Benefits and disadvantages of sharing the principalship

journal contribution
posted on 2010-01-01, 00:00 authored by Karen StarrKaren Starr
Trials are occurring around Australia and across education systems to test the veracity and feasibility of various models of job sharing in the Principalship. Currently it appears that Catholic schools are more likely to entertain such arrangements than other schooling sectors (Di Stephano, 2002), however, trials are currently underway in government schools in several Australian states (Department of Education and Children's Services, 2009). These trials arise from the need to encourage more people into the Principalship and to retain experienced Principals. There is scarce research in this area in Australia, but job sharing is an emerging trend in the Principalship that could grow in popularity. There are many reasons given for job-sharing in the Principalship. First is the incumbent's desire to acquire 'worldlife balance'. With an average working week of sixty hours or more (DEl 2004), sharing the leadership load is attractive. Principals currently trialling a shared arrangement cite the desire for more personal time, age and stage issues such as the need to care for ageing parents, and the hope for a transition period to retirement. Education departments see the part-time/shared option as being attractive to leadership aspirants at a time when there's a shortage of Principals and the increasing 'baby-boomer retirement problem to address. Another reason is an emerging interest in re-designing the Principalship, with various constructions being explored (Lacey, 2006). This article considers these new configurations of the Principalship.



Australian Educational Leader






18 - 21


Australian Council for Educational Leaders


Kenmore, Qld.





Publication classification

C3 Non-refereed articles in a professional journal