An Investigation into the Causes of Conflict in Zimbabwean Schools: A Case Study of Nkayi South Circuit | Mapolisa | Nova Journal of Humanities and Social Sciences

An Investigation into the Causes of Conflict in Zimbabwean Schools: A Case Study of Nkayi South Circuit

Tichaona Mapolisa, Thembinkosi Tshabalala


The present study sought to investigate the causes of conflict in selected Zimbabwean schools with particular reference to Nkayi South Circuit. This article draws on a qualitative inquiry of factors contributing towards various conflict situations in schools using a sample of 30 teachers and heads of schools from Matabeleland North in Zimbabwe selected by means of purposeful sampling.  The research adopted a qualitative methodology using a case study design.  Data were gathered by means of semi-structured interviews using an interview guide.  Views of the respondents were audio-taped, transcribed and became the primary data for analysis.  The findings indicated that most respondents felt that conflict affected the productivity of the members of the organization.  Participants indicated that lack of communication; interpersonal relationships within the schools as well as procedural issues were the major causes of conflict. The study concluded that Conflict amongst educators in Zimbabwean schools is endemic. It went on to conclude that the major causes of conflict in schools include the following: competition for resources, gossiping or spreading malicious rumors about a work mate, poor communication, and incompetence in the work place, alcohol abuse, favoritism, power struggles, and lack of compensation for work done. The study recommends that school should have agreed mechanisms in place for groups of people who may be antagonistic to collectively discuss and resolve issues.

Key words: School, conflict, circuit, disputes, conflict management

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DOI Prefix: 10.20286