Female Teachers’ Promotion Barriers and Mitigation Strategies: Multiple Case Study Findings from South Africa

Dorris Goodness Mathebula, Onoriode Collins Potokri

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The study investigated barriers female teachers face when applying for promotional positions and their consequential impact on their teaching responsibilities. In this study, female and women are interchangeably used. The study was based on a qualitative multiple-case study research design and approach. Purposive sampling was used. In line with the design and approach, the sample consisted of five teachers from five different schools. An unstructured interview method was used to collect data, and the data collected were analysed by means of the thematic analysis method. The findings of this study revealed several barriers to management positions. These include domination by men, lack of leadership and management skills, lack of self-confidence, corruption in the schools, discrimination, and women not wanting to work far from their children or homes. These barriers burden women teachers because they become demoralised, demotivated, and bitter. Mitigation strategies that could help female teachers with their experience regarding promotional barriers also emerged as part of this study’s findings. Based on the findings, conclusions and recommendations were made.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)65-77
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Advocacy, Research and Education
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 25 Aug 2022


  • congruity theory
  • female teachers
  • gender discrimination
  • management
  • promotion barriers
  • qualitative research
  • school governing body

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Health (social science)
  • Cultural Studies


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