The role of the North West education department in the induction of primary school principals
Digwamaje, Olebogeng Bethuel
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The purpose of this study was to examine the role of the North West Department of Education in the induction of primary school principals. This study was ,guided by four primary research questions namely: What constitutes the nature and characteristics of induction? What are the induction strategies that the Department of Education employs in this exercise? How effective are the induction programmes in the North West Province? What are the challenges of induction in the North West Province? The review of the literature focused on the recruitment of principals, the various models of the induction programme for principals and how these impacted on the preparation of principals in the management, the governance, the administration and the instructional leadership within the school. Questionnaire served as the sole data collection instrument, and it comprised 44 items. The sample population consisted of two hundred (200) primary school principals selected randomly from the four districts of the North West Province. The data was collected using a Lickert 5 point scale. The following areas were covered in the questionnaire: The nature and characteristics of the induction The challenges of the induction The strategies of the induction The effectiveness of the induction. The findings revealed that the Department of Education does make efforts to ensure that novice and seasoned principals in the North West Province are not faced with the 'swim or sink' dilemma in the management of schools. The data further revealed that new principals are trained upon assumption of duty. However, data revealed that quality assurance mechanisms are seriously lacking and that there is no variety in the strategies that are being followed in the induction of school principals. In conclusion, the study recommended further research into the implementation of the induction system as well as a further benchmarking of the best practices beyond the province to establish how the North West compares with other provinces.