Exploring factors that influence how teachers implement the technology curriculum in grade 9 : a case of three secondary schools in the Umlazi district.
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Technology education is a global phenomenon which is often met with varied reactions from teachers largely due to their lived experiences. Various studies, both locally and internationally, indicate that technology education and, by far, technology curriculum implementation is a complex process which is highly unlikely to succeed if it excludes teachers. This study highlights some of the factors that influence how teachers implement the Grade 9 Technology curriculum in secondary schools. The study is therefore framed on the Concerns Based Adoption Model (CBAM) and responds to three critical questions: 1. What are the factors that influence the way teachers implement the Grade 9 Technology curriculum in secondary schools? 2. How do these factors influence the teachers’ implementation of the Grade 9 Technology curriculum in secondary schools? And 3. Why do teachers implement the Grade 9 Technology curriculum the way they do in secondary schools? Using a case study methodology, three secondary schools in the Umlazi district were studied. Three Grade 9 teachers were purposively selected from the three schools based on their professional experience in teaching Technology in Grade 9 at secondary schools. Lesson observations and one-on-one semi-structured interviews were used to generate data which was thematically analysed. Some of the themes that emerged from the analysis of data include: inadequate resources, hands-on practical workshops, continuation of Technology subjects in the FET (Grades 10-12) phase, and collaboration with other teachers. From the findings it was clear that irrespective of the context, curriculum implementation was a complex process which largely depended on competent continuous support to be provided to teachers for teaching and learning to be meaningful for learners. The study suggests that the active involvement of all stakeholders, particularly the Department of Education (at district, provincial and national levels), in ensuring continuous support for teachers to effectively implement any innovation through continuous professional teacher development is necessary.