International Journal of
Educational Administration and Policy Studies

  • Abbreviation: Int. J. Educ. Admin. Pol. Stud.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 2141-6656
  • DOI: 10.5897/IJEAPS
  • Start Year: 2009
  • Published Articles: 243

Full Length Research Paper

Compliance toward ethical leadership among school principals: A synthesis of qualitative research-based evidences

Kennedy Dastan Kaduma
  • Kennedy Dastan Kaduma
  • Faculty of Education, Mkwawa University College of Education, Iringa, Tanzania.
  • Google Scholar

  •  Received: 23 December 2023
  •  Accepted: 06 February 2024
  •  Published: 29 February 2024


Ethical leadership has proven to be pivotal in fostering efficiency and effectiveness across various organizations. It cultivates employees' confidence, commitment, job satisfaction and enhances their performance, thereby contributing to organizational stability and competitiveness. Given its significance, ethical leadership has become a global priority, garnering attention from both organizations and educational institutions. This study conducts a literature review on the adherence to ethical leadership among school principals in primary and secondary schools. Specifically, it examines whether these leaders demonstrate ethical leadership attributes in their daily practices. Employing a systematic qualitative review design, the exploration unfolds through three stages: searching, reviewing, and synthesizing existing literature. The findings unveil instances of both compliance and noncompliance towards ethical leadership among school principals. On the positive side, school principals are depicted as exhibiting attributes such as integrity, fairness and justice, concern for others (people orientation), ethical guidance, responsibility, role modeling, and openness. Conversely, instances of deviation from ethical leadership attributes are also noted, including actions such as undermining the dignity of others, displaying favoritism, indiscreet information sharing, prioritizing personal gain, and irresponsibility. Based on these findings, the study advocates for a comprehensive approach to nurture ethical leadership among school principals. By addressing both compliance and noncompliance, the paper contributes to advancing knowledge relevant for enhancing leadership practices that not only align with educational goals but also establish a foundation for sustained school effectiveness.


Key words:  Ethical leadership, unethical leadership, school principals.