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Blindfolded in a Minefield: Principals' Ethical Decision-Making


Cambridge Journal of Education Volume 33, Number 3, ISSN 0305-764X


Schools in Australia, as in most other western nations, face global trends resulting in principals being placed under intense and increasing pressure. Some of this pressure results from their having to make and justify decisions that are complex and fraught with ethical difficulty. Unfortunately, many feel ill-equipped to deal with these challenging decisions. A recent survey of principals' experience in relation to such decisions suggests that many lack the skills necessary to confidently discharge their duties. If we accept that there is a dearth of professional development in ethical decision-making, we must accept that there is an obligation to provide appropriate preparation and support, both on employing authorities such as departments of education, and on external agencies such as universities. However, it is essential that such professional preparation appropriately balances system needs against the needs of individual principals in the community contexts in which they work. (Contains 2 figures and 1 note.)


Dempster, N. & Berry, V. (2003). Blindfolded in a Minefield: Principals' Ethical Decision-Making. Cambridge Journal of Education, 33(3), 457-477. Retrieved November 30, 2021 from .

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