An Education System’s Perspective on Turning Around South Africa’s Dysfunctional Schools

Stephanus Gert Pretorius


The South African education system is grappling with vast numbers of dysfunctional schools. Schools on their own cannot be blamed for all educational ills of a country. Dysfunctional schools are the symptoms of the impaired functioning of the entire education system in which a great variety of societal structures are involved. Thus, this article aimed at developing an education system’s perspective on turning around dysfunctional schools. In addition to an extensive review of related literature, a qualitative approach was adopted in which a broad sample of practitioners and experts were targeted. Typical of a qualitative approach, a variety of data sources were explored, including interviews, a qualitative survey and school visits. Based on the literature review and the responses of the experts it was found that the South African education system fails to build and sustain the conditions for school and teacher effectiveness. It was concluded that the education system, consisting of the managerial and administrative structures, the educational institutions, support services and the parties with an interest in education should unite in making schools effective. All hands in the community are needed in order to transform dysfunctional schools into places of dedicated teaching and learning.

DOI: 10.5901/mjss.2014.v5n15p348

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Mediterranean Journal of Social Sciences ISSN 2039-9340(Print) ISSN 2039-2117(Online)

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