chapter  11
21 Pages

Women head teachers in Northern Ireland

WithTeresa Rees, Philip Heaton, Lyn McBriar

The new managerialism introduced into schools in the UK in the 1980s and 1990s impacted significantly upon the everyday lives of those who work in schools and members of governing bodies. The shift towards the Local Management of Schools (LMS) enshrined in the 1988 Education Reform Act1 altered in particular the roles of both head teachers and those who chair governing boards. Head teachers are now expected to have more responsibility for financial management and for marketing their school in their local communities, to attract pupils, governors and sponsorship. Team-leading experience and new technology skills are increasingly an advantage for an aspiring head teacher. Chairs of governing bodies now play a more significant role in staff selection processes. What effect are these changes likely to have on the gender balance of head teachers?