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Reflections on new public management: Independent public schools, staffing and social equity

Money, Claire (2014) Reflections on new public management: Independent public schools, staffing and social equity. Masters by Coursework thesis, Murdoch University.

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Abstract

This thesis investigated changes in employment opportunities for part-time teachers in Western Australia as a result of the Independent Public School (IPS) initiative. The study was premised on the understanding that the Independent Public Schools initiative is based on the core tenets of New Public Management. A telephone survey collected a convenient sample of ten principals’ perceptions about part-time teaching staff, with a specific focus on commitment. An analysis of the responses identified tensions between principals’ values, the characteristics of the Independent Public School initiative and equal opportunity policies. Principals placed high value on team work, and perceived part-time teachers as less committed to teaching than their full-time colleagues. These may create tensions through increased workplace competition invoked through the Independent Public Schools initiative and the limited availability of part-time teachers. This thesis also identified concerns surrounding the labelling of schools as IPS or non-IPS. It concludes by identifying that the working conditions for part-time staff may experience negative changes in employment equity as a result of the Independent Public Schools initiative. The thesis acknowledges that IPS is here to stay and that the policy challenges lie in identifying, avoiding and ameliorating any inequities the IPS initiative may create.

Publication Type: Thesis (Masters by Coursework)
Murdoch Affiliation: Sir Walter Murdoch School of Public Policy and International Affairs
Supervisor: Haigh, Yvonne
URI: http://researchrepository.murdoch.edu.au/id/eprint/27426
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