School principals’ systems thinking: antecedents and consequences

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Author
Benoliel, P.

Purpose: Today’s educational complexities require principals to adopt a more systemic perspective toward school management. Although research has emphasized the benefits associated with the holistic perspective of systems thinking, research in the educational field has been limited. The purpose of this paper is to investigate the mediating role of principals’ systems thinking (PST) in the relationships between instructional leadership (IL) and subject coordinators’ organizational commitment and job satisfaction. Design/methodology/approach: Data were collected by surveying a sample of 226 subject coordinators from different elementary schools randomly chosen in Israel. Subject coordinators completed questionnaires on their PST competencies, their principals’ IL, job satisfaction and organizational commitment. Structural equation modeling was used to test the research hypotheses. Findings: The results confirmed the main hypotheses: PST did facilitate subject coordinators’ organizational commitment and job satisfaction. Findings also showed that PST mediated the relationship between IL and subject coordinators’ organizational commitment and job satisfaction. Originality/value: By integrating research from both educational and non-educational literature, this study contributes to deepen our understanding regarding the antecedents and consequences of the PST as perceived by their subject coordinators, providing a broader leadership framework on their functions in today’s complex school systems.

Benoliel, P., Shaked, H., Nadav, N., & Schechter, C. (2019)

School principals’ systems thinking: antecedents and consequences. Journal of Educational Administration 57(2), 167-184