DECISION -MAKING AS A SCHOOL GOVERNANCE RESPONSIBILITY

S.J. Mohapi

UNISA (SOUTH AFRICA)
The paper explores how rural secondary school governing bodies in South Africa make decisions. The paper focuses on the process of taking these decisions with the view of determining if the process is in line with South African School Act of 1996. Respondents were from four secondary school governing bodies, all from one circuit in Mpumalanga Province. Each school governing bodies had 12 members (48n). Structured interviews were conducted. Subsequent to the interviews, the researcher attended School governing bodies meetings as a non-participant observer. The data gathered by means of socio-grams and an analysis of the decision- making process.

From the research findings it emerged that the simple majority rule decision –making model, whereby a majority outvotes a minority, was employed twice in all the meetings. On the other hand, a consensus type of decisions-making, used only once in the all the observations, is where each role player has a right to raise his/her concerns or criticisms for the good of the organization. The study compares the two types or models of decision-making and their implications for democracy.

The study will shed light on how rural school governing bodies in South Africa take decisions and suggest ways of improving the process with aim of being more democratic