Key Leadership Styles and Perception Differences Among Sabah Rural School Principals
Gaya kepimpinan utama dan perbezaan persepsi dalam kalangan Pengetua Sekolah pedalaman Sabah
This study aims to examine the leadership style practiced by principals in rural schools in Sabah. A quantitative approach by using a survey method was used to obtain responses from the sample. The sample of this study involved 56 principals, which is the entire population of principals in rural schools in Sabah. Four principal leadership styles which are human resource, symbolic, political and structural were measured by using instruments adapted from Leadership Orientations (Self) by Bolmen and Deal, (1999; 2003). Principals' leadership styles were measured to observe the leadership styles that are often practiced and the differences in the principals' perceptions of leadership styles based on gender, length of service and educational level. The results showed that the most frequent leadership style practiced by principals in rural schools in Sabah is human resource leadership style, symbolic leadership style recorded the second highest mean score, third mean score recorded by political leadership style and structural leadership style recorded the lowest mean score. The results of the study also prove that that there are no differences in leadership style variables among secondary school principals in the interior of Sabah based on their gender, length of service and educational level. The findings of this study can help the leader of a school to understand the best leadership styles to practice in their schools. Understanding the concept of leadership styles is important for school principals, especially in rural schools so that they can adopt appropriate and effective leadership styles to improve their school performance.
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