Community participation in managing public secondary schools: a case study of ward-based schools in the Morogoro region, Tanzania

Hamidu, Hassan Khalfan (2021). Community participation in managing public secondary schools: a case study of ward-based schools in the Morogoro region, Tanzania. University of Birmingham. Ph.D.

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This study provides an understanding of community participation (CP) roles and experiences in managing public secondary schools by exploring the context, methods, perspectives, and motivation strategies to enhance their engagement. The research draws on a multiple nested case study methodology that uses semi-structured individual and focused group interviews, participant observation, and documentary review. These methods helped to explore the experiences of the 139 research actors as they describe their practices, the value of their participation, barriers they encounter, and motivation strategies set to enhance this approach under the policy context. A thematic analysis approach adopted to analyse, interpret, and discuss findings is presented in a descriptive summary.

Findings reveal that the participation of communities is predominantly passive and very low. However, it is widely an enthusiastic approach that adds resources that improve the schools' functioning, also building social cohesion between schools and the surrounding community. Local government and school leaders' strategies to enhance CP do not offer the community power and influence in decision-making, openness, and transparency, leading to deep mistrust and internal contradictions. In contrast, schools largely remain in trouble due to limited government resources input in managing the schools.

This study's insights should inform the future research agenda related to CP in public school leadership and identify barriers to active community engagement in managing education in their localities. The study presented strategic motivation arrangements that enable SGBs, heads of schools, and local government authorities (LGAs) to enhance more planned and active CP. These include support legislation in place, appreciation, showcase elements of collaborations, embedding with empowerment, and openness to build trust. An explicit participatory team management model (PTMM) for a robust democratic school governance architecture, which supports an authentic community voice in managing schools through placing CP into the action cycle, is also proposed. PTMM should empower communities to build a sense of owning the schools and effectively improve schools for quality education.

Type of Work: Thesis (Doctorates > Ph.D.)
Award Type: Doctorates > Ph.D.
Licence: All rights reserved
College/Faculty: Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Social Sciences
School or Department: School of Education
Funders: Other
Other Funders: The Commonwealth Scholarship Commission in the UK, The University of Birmingham
Subjects: L Education > L Education (General)


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