SA Journal of Education, Vol 28, No 3 (2008)

The experience of and need for training of school governors in rural schools in South Africa

Stephen Tsotetsi, Noleen Van Wyk, Eleanor Lemmer


The concept of decentralisation originates from the belief that the state cannot alone control schools, but should share its power with other stakeholders, particularly those closer to the school, on a partnership basis. The South African Schools Act (Act 84 of 1996) mandates the establishment of school governing bodies that allow stakeholders - such as the state, parents, educators and learners (in secondary schools) - to play an active role in taking decisions on behalf of the school. However, this can only happen if participants in school
governance are trained to decide on matters affecting their schools. With this in mind, qualitative research was undertaken to determine what training school governing bodies had received in selected rural schools in the Free State and to what extent this had assisted them in fulfilling their tasks. Findings indicated perceptions of training and its effectiveness. Based on the findings, detailed recom-
mendations for the improvement of practice are made.

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