The dynamics of generating and managing educational resources in Swaziland selected secondary schools.
Langwenya-Myeni, Doris Nompumelelo.
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In this study I investigated the dynamics of generating and managing educational resources in Swaziland secondary schools. The need for this study arose out of my realisation of a knowledge gap namely the inefficiency in physical and material resource distribution, high secondary school costs of education and financial resource mismanagement in schools. In the study I explored the experiences of Head Teachers (HTs) and Heads of Departments (HODs); factors affecting educational resources; and practices to sustain educational resources generation and management. I employed a mixed methods research approach using a multiple-site case study design. I purposively selected six government secondary schools with six HTs and thirty two HODs as participants of the study, in two regions of Swaziland. I generated data through a questionnaire, face-to-face interviews, focus group interviews and document analysis. Qualitative data were analysed by means of descriptive statistics. Qualitative data were analysed through thematic analysis. I adopted a three-pronged theoretical framework involving the collegiality theory of management, the systems approach and funding models. Findings revealed that while the schools had the basic resources, some of these were obsolete and others needed immediate repair. Although schools seemed to have the potential of linking with the external environment, resource generation therein was currently inward looking and very limited in terms of expansion strategies. The schools did not have structures in place for resource mobilisation and management. There was an apparent absence of clear policy guidelines on resource activities, no strategic planning conducted with the external world and school managers (HTs and HODs) seemed to lack skills and techniques for generating and managing educational resources. I conclude that the schools need to improve upon their internal mechanisms to manage existing resources. I further conclude that the current inwards looking approach to resource generation is unsustainable. Schools need to forge partnerships at two main levels: with other schools and with the broader community.