LEADERSHIP, CAREER GROWTH AND SOCIALIZATION PATHS OF MALAYSIAN PUBLIC SCHOOL MANAGERS
The main purpose of this study was to understand the nature of learning for school managers in government schools as they learn and make decisions at different stages of the socialization stages from accession to retirement. A phenomenological approach was utilized and participants were selected from excellent and successful school managers through elite sampling. The data collection methods employed to achieve the purpose of the study were mainly in-depth interviews with the participants. The thematic findings which emerged from this data included four socialization stages namely: (1) Entry into Headship; (2) Identity Formation; (3) Making a Difference; and (4) Reformulation of Personal Values. The study concluded that the findings of this study provided a helpful guide for understanding school managers’ learning in the socialization process towards achieving better leadership and decision making. Implications for relevant training and appropriate support for leadership preparation and learning are suggested.