SA Journal of Education, Vol 36, No 4 (2016)

A case for relational leadership and an ethics of care for counteracting bullying at schools

Brigitte Smit, Vanessa Scherman


This paper attends to a theoretical exposition of relational leadership and ethics care as complementary approaches to educational leadership in counteracting bullying at schools. Schools constitute complex systems of activities, processes and dynamics. More specifically, a social system in schools is a web of interactions between the various groups within the school, serving a number of purposes, with the intention of facilitating the flow of information, reflecting a process of socialisation, and the transfer of moral values. Such moral values underpin the value of social justice for all stakeholders in the education system. The moral standing of a school principal is key to creating such an educational landscape, where leaders care for their teachers and learners. Caring leadership is in its very essence relational, where an ethic of care observes the principle of fairness and social justice.

doi: 10.15700/saje.v36n4a1312

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