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School Leadership for the 21St Century in Fiji

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Over the years, various concerns have been raised relating to Fijian education (Baba 1979; Dakuidreketi 1995; Bacchus 2000)It has been highlighted that many Fijian educational institutions are not doing well academically(M.Singh 2008) Media reports have further suggested that all school participants, including management, staff and parents, must share responsibilities for this debacle. Of these groups, the school administrator plays a key role in all affairs of the school. These schools face considerable challenges such as uninspiring leadership and lack of support from the community served by the school (Williams.E. 2000). As (Leithwood 1999) argued, “outstanding leadership is exquisitely sensitive to context”.

In the same vein, (NCSL 2001-2002) in the UK argues that leadership should be viewed as a contextualized activity”. Thus, the context in which you are affected is what you do as a school leader. Literature for example, (David Stewart 1985) demonstrates that a good working theory in school administration is necessary for the purpose of effectively running a school. Since all schools have special characteristics, it is vital for school principals and head teachers to adopt a theory that will help them to have a good understanding of aspects relating to their professional work. In this regard, it is crucial that school administrators are professionally prepared for the job. Undoubtedly, application of knowledge acquired from educational administration courses in everyday work will make a difference in the school’s performance. Due to the importance of leadership in securing sustainable school development, many countries have invested considerably in the professional preparation for on-going development of school leaders ...

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...ferred to as the “wise three C’s” i.e. commitment, consistency, and cooperation.

This will lead to sustainable leadership where a positive impact can be seen on the people, environment, relationships, processes, systems and culture that strengthen the organization.

Professor Chandra, in 2004 stated that "quality comes from sound and innovative curriculum, effective and challenging classroom practice, challenging and valid assessment and from the provision of adequate resources for education". The new social and political order in the nation might improve the school leadership. The Prime Minister’s plan to prioritize education can only flourish if there are qualified and ethical leaders to take up the challenges. These leaders should read up on leadership articles, books and journals to improve their working knowledge so that our nation becomes highly educated.
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