Leadership, Management & Governance
The School Governing Body (SGB) consists of elected parent members, educators and non-educator members as well as the Principal who is an ex-officio member of the SGB. The term of office of an SGB is 3 years commencing, the current period commencing from March 2015 and concluding in March 2018.
The composition of the School Management Team and the School Governing Body:
School Governing Body (SGB)
Shamin Garib (Principal of Bryneven Primary School)
Hugh Farrell (Chairman & Parent member)
Aman Singh (Treasurer & Parent member)
Videshni Singh (Parent member in charge of the Legal Portfolio)
Joslyn Taylor (Vice-Chairperson – Parent member in charge of the Personnel portfolio)
Jothindran Pillay (Secretary & Educator member)
Naeem Nakooda (Deputy head, Educator Member in charge of Safety and Security portfolio)
Gill Whitcher (Non – Educator member in charge of Grounds & Buildings portfolio)
Melissa Robertson (Parent member in charge of Fundraising portfolio)
Kim Bradford (Parent member in charge of Arts & Culture)
Michelle Govender (Parent member)
Anthony Barnard (Finance)
The relationship between the SMT and the SGB (Adapted from an extract from the KwaZulu Natal SGB Manual)
“An important aspect of school management and leadership is the relationship between the SMT and the SGB. It is important to understand that responsibilities are shared between them. These two teams should work well to ensure that there is no confusion or conflict.
The Principal is a member of the SMT as well as the SGB which means that he has a vital role in co-ordinating these two.
Principal & SMT (School Management Team)
Principal & SGB (School Governing Body)
Mainly responsible for professional management in the day-to-day running of the school.
Mainly responsible for policy and overall governance in the school.
It is important to know the difference between professional management and school governance.
Problems could arise if these two are confused. The table below shows the broad responsibilities of the two teams (SMT and SGB) as defined by the South African Schools Act, (1996). (Extracted from Understanding the SA Schools Act (1997) Dept of Education as quoted in Module 1, Sacred Heart College Research and Development Unit.) Although the list of responsibilities for the School Governing Body looks much ‘larger’ than the list for the principal and the SMT, actually they are equally important. They work together so that the school can provide high quality education. The list shows that the SGB (including the principal) is responsible for many important tasks, but actually the SGB cannot do its work effectively unless it co-operates closely with the SMT (which also includes the principal), educators and learners in the school.
Broadly speaking, the duties of the Principal and SMT compared with the duties of the SGB and Principal are as follows;
Responsibilities of the Principal and SMT
Responsibilities of the SGB and Principal
Perform professional functions.
Organise all activities that support teaching and learning.
Day-to-day administration and organisation of teaching and learning at the school.
Manage personnel matters.
Decide on textbooks, educational materials and equipment to be bought.
Manage day-to-day financial matters.
Develop a code of conduct for learners, etc.
Support the principal, educators and other staff in carrying out their professional functions.
Ensure that high quality education is offered at the school.
Decide on school times.
Recommend the appointment of educators, administrative, and support staff at the school.
Decide on the extra-mural curriculum.
Buy books, educational materials, and equipment for the school where required.
Raise additional funds (on top of the State contribution).
Administer a school fund, including running a bank account.
Control the financial records of the school.
Prepare an annual budget and submit it to parents for approval (at the AGM in November)
Ensure that school fees are collected.
Promote the best interests of the school.
Encourage parents, learners, educators and other staff to work willingly for the school.
Adopt a constitution.
Develop a mission statement for the school.
Adopt a code of conduct for learners.
Control and maintain school property, buildings and grounds.
The big question is: Who is responsible for the school in the end? Ultimately, the principal is accountable for the school as the department of education’s representative in the school. However, the school itself is a ‘juristic person’. This means that the school is a legal body that exists independently of the members of the department of education, governing body, the principal, the buildings, learners and parents. The school has rights and duties in its own name just as a natural person has. Because the school is a juristic person, it may buy, sell, hire or own property, enter into contracts, make investments, and sue or be sued. All these actions of the school are, of course, taken by the SGB – just like a company acts through its directors”.