SA Journal of Education, Vol 43, No 3 (2023)

Financial management decision-making of school finance committees in public primary schools in Mpumalanga province, South Africa

Simon Diatleng Sebidi


Subject to the South African Schools Act, 84 of 1996 section 16(1), the governance of every public school is vested in its governing body and it may perform only such functions and obligations and exercise only such rights as prescribed by the Act. Section 30(1a) of this Act demands school governing bodies to establish committees and appoint members of the School Governing Body (SGB) to such committees based on expertise. With this study I investigated the financial management decision-making of school finance committees in public primary schools in the Mpumalanga province in South Africa. A qualitative approach was applied in the study. Focus-group interviews were used to collect data from the purposefully selected 2 public primary schools in which the finance committee members were involved. A case study design was applied. Thematic data analysis was used to analyse the collected data. All the participants demonstrated awareness of their financial management decision-making roles. Participants revealed that they did not perform their roles effectively due to their illiteracy levels, limited understanding of financial management legislation, inadequate training, interference of the principals in the management of finances, poor consultation and communication. I recommend to the Department of Education to provide financial committees with adequate support and training, to capacitate principals in the area of human relations and resource management and consider appointing financial management advisors at the circuit offices within districts to assist in guiding, monitoring and evaluating the financial management processes in schools on a regular basis.

ORCiD iDs of author:
Simon Diatleng Sebidi -

Full Text: PDF