An exploration of instructional leadership practices of school principals : a case study of four schools in Durban.
Reddy, Louis Christopher.
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This study entailed an exploration of instructional leadership practices of school principals. A case study was conducted at four schools in Durban. The research participants included four school principals, two from primary and two from secondary schools. My purpose was to explore the role of school principals in supporting teaching and learning at their schools. The study was conducted from an interpretive perspective. Three theories informed this investigation, namely instructional leadership theory, transformational leadership theory and distributed leadership theory. The data analysis procedure entailed a transcription of all four interviews that were thematically analysed to produce significant findings which informed the conclusions.All four principals had similar things to share about their role as instructional leaders, such as creating a favourable teaching and learning atmosphere. Secondly, some of the things that principals actually do to support teaching and learning is to motivate educators and learners and organise fund raising. Thirdly, there a numerous challenges that school principals are faced with irrespective of whether it is a primary or secondary school. Fourthly, principals take responsibility for overcoming challenges by reviewing the school’s code of conduct and making amendments to curb discipline related problems and implementing professional development of their staff. All four principals displayed a good understanding of their role as instructional leaders. We can conclude that the school principals who were interviewed make a concerted effort to ensure the maximum development of their staff. They view team collaboration and delegation of tasks as important to the smooth functioning of the organisation and try their best to ensure that this takes place at their schools. Principals also voiced concerns over SGB members that often overstepped their mark in certain instances. Recommendations informed by the conclusions demonstrated that school principals, unions, and the Department of Education need to do more to enhance the delivery of quality education in schools.