Restoration of a culture of teaching and learning in the secondary schools of the Eastern Cape Province
Magqaza, Ocean Bungani
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Restoration of a culture of teaching and learning in the secondary schools is a very challenging activity in the 1990s. This study attempts to investigate the culture of the school in relation to a culture of teaching, learning and effective participation of all stakeholders in the schools. Research has revealed that similar investigations in to this topic are already conducted throughout the country, but very little is done in the Eastern Cape Province. When one considers the incidents that are taking place in the secondary schools, namely, strikes, expulsion of top management or the principals by students and the high failure rate one may be tempted to view these as a shortcomings. This vision is not far-fetched, because it is commonly held that public schools, particularly, traditionally Black secondary schools are incapable of reforming themselves. This leads to a waste of resources, material and human, that the Department of Education provides to enhance quality education for students. The lack of quality education in some schools is causing concern to the parents. This is, therefore, an opportune time, particularly as the Eastern Cape secondary schools have recorded low pass rates in the matriculation examination for three consecutive years, 1996 to 1998. One may urgue that the low pass rate is attributed to uninvolvement of parents in the education of their children. With reference to un involvement of parents, the researcher's experience of monitoring school administration since 1990 has reinforced his conviction that the principals of secondary schools in the Eastern Cape have little knowledge of management and administration in particular. Management and administration, i.e. parental involvement, joint decision-making, staff development, appointment of educators, and learner affairs are discussed in relation to the academic improvement in the schools. Concerning academic improvements, the analysis of the results reveals areas that require attention, for example, township schools need more attention than rural schools in terms of academic attainment. The recommendations given address systems and the formation thereof.