Exploring interpersonal conflicts between teachers and headteachers: A case of selected schools in Kitwe District
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The study sought to explore the interpersonal conflicts between the teachers and head teadiers in secondary schools of Kitwe district. A mixed ^proach was adopted which used structured interviews and questionnaires to collect data The sample comprised of 36 participants, 30 teachers 6 from each of the five schools and six head teachers' one from each school. The study revealed that conflicts occur often in schools and that three quarters of the respondents indicated they have beoi engaged in an interpersonal conflict before. It was also found that conflicts are caused by many factors such as miscommunication, unfair resource allocations, lack of understanding, differences in opinion and absenteeism. Other causes pointed out were poor time keeping, stereotyping, and differences in perceptions, unethical conduct, allowances, strict supervision, ideologies, and personality clash and below average performance. The study observed that interpersonal conflicts manifests in many forms. The common ones were said to be avoidance behaviour, emotional threats, and failure to carry out instructions, refiisal to fiind certain projects, incompetence, attaiding to classes late and differing unnecessary. Others were personal confrontation, communication breakdown and absenteeism. The study indicated that interpersonal conflicts have a great impact on teachers. It brings about demotivation, hostile work atmosphere, low work morale and input, loss of interest in work and reduction in seriousness. Further it showed that interpersonal conflict results in delayed decision making, wastage of resources, staff and pupils indiscipline, ineffective schools and loss of vision for school. On the positive note, it was pointed out interpersonal conflict brings about desired change, improves decision making, challenges old habits and seeks permanent solution and improves the learner and teacher performance.
University of Zambia
Master of Education in Education Management