One of the factors contributing to poor academic performance in Namibian schools is the failure of school principals to manage their respective schools properly.
This is according to Namibia’s Deputy Minister of Education, Arts and Culture Anna Nghipondoka, who said many schools perform poorly because those entrusted to lead and give direction do not have a clue how to run a school.
She says a school without proper direction and guidance from the principal results in failure.
Nghipondoka, who spoke during a principals’ meeting at Karasburg on Tuesday, pointed out that a lack of vision among some principals trickles down to teachers and learners.
“We must have a positive outlook of the future – it is only a positive principal that will do well with meagre resources,” she said.
She said some schools do not perform because the principals work in isolation, as they plan and make decisions without consulting teachers and thus some teachers are not motivated to do their work properly, adding that some principals do not even speak or give tasks to their teachers.
The former education director emphasised the importance of good management, saying this is needed if schools are to perform well, and thus she called on all principals to improve on the management of their schools.
“Principals should plan together with their heads of departments, and teachers, speak to your teachers, share responsibility, and bring in a sense of responsibility, but this is not happening – these teachers feel hopeless, stupid and lost.”
She said some teachers do not know their duties, as they always wait to be pushed around for them to do their job, which Nghipondoka says should come to an end.
“If you are a committed teacher, you do not need someone to be behind you to push you to do your job, a job that you are paid to do.”
She called on teachers to go the extra mile to achieve good results, noting that many a time teachers are unwilling to even use their own resources to enhance their growth professionally, as she noted that teachers are reluctant to even buy wi-fi that they can afford on their own, to do research and gain more knowledge on the subject they teach.
“You want to be given everything, even for your personal growth – you want government to provide for you, you will die poor!” she said.
She also urged schools to find solutions to their problems by working together as a team and not depend on external personnel to assist even when they are capable of doing things themselves.