A team-based approach to leading and managing a rural primary school.
The aim of this study is to explore a team-based approach to leading and managing a rural primary school. A requirement in a team-based approach to make quality decisions and improvements in the school, comes from people working in harmony. In noting that teams are more effective than individuals, this study explores how a team-based approach to leading and managing schools plays itself out in a rural primary school. The objectives of this study were to determine how a team-based approach is operationalised in a rural primary school and to determine the challenges and possibilities associated with a team-based approach. The study employed an interpretive meta-theoretical approach with a case study research design. For the purpose of this study, purposive sampling was chosen. The study was conducted in a public rural primary school in the eThekwini Region of the Ilembe District. The research participants sampled comprised two male and three female participants to accommodate gender representation. The principal, head of department (intermediate, phase), acting head of department (foundation phase), one level one educator (intermediate phase) and one level one educator (foundation phase) who were concerned with the day-to-day activity of the organisation and the delivery of its performance were selected. Data was collected by means of semi-structured interviews. The collected data was analysed and categorised into common categories, patterns and themes. The key findings that emerged from the research were that to ensure achievement of school goals, teamwork is necessary. People working together, learning and sharing together will promote team effectiveness. The principal, together with the SMT play an important role in creating and managing the different types of teams. By having regular formal and informal meetings; ongoing professional development; monitoring and evaluating members of a team; having a clear vision and rationale to manage change and conflict will lead to continuous improvement and team effectiveness.