Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository


Master of Education




Viczko, Melody


This study sought to examine the experiences of secondary school teachers with parental leave in one school board in Ontario. The purpose of the research was to understand the policies that govern parental leave and teachers’ perceptions about the power dynamics in how these policies are enacted. This qualitative study was conducted with semi-structured interviews with six teachers who had taken parental leave in the last five years. The research explored the supports and challenges for teachers and the ways in which teachers’ experiences with parental leave policies contributed towards gendered organization of schools. The experiences of the participants in this study suggest that the ways parental leave policies are enacted brought challenges for women teachers, particularly related to work-family life balance and career implications. This research contributes to the body of knowledge about parental leave policies, gendered nature of organizations and work-life balance of working parents.