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Journal of Education (University of KwaZulu-Natal)

On-line version ISSN 2520-9868
Print version ISSN 0259-479X


MESTRY, Raj. Principals' perspectives and experiences of their instructional leadership functions to enhance learner achievement in public schools. Journal of Education [online]. 2017, n.69, pp.257-280. ISSN 2520-9868.

School principals are faced with new demands, more complex decisions and additional responsibilities than ever before. Their day is usually filled with diverse administrative and management functions such as procuring resources, managing learner discipline, resolving conflicts with parents and dealing with unexpected teacher and learner crises. However, it is imperative for school principals to accentuate their role as instructional leaders by emphasising best teaching practices and keeping their schools focused on curriculum, teaching, and assessment to meet learner needs and enhance learner achievement. Using open-ended questionnaires and personal interviews with eight school principals, this study investigated how the principals perceived and experienced their functions as instructional leaders to improve learner performance. Findings revealed that many school principals repudiated claims that their primary function was to manage teaching and learning. However, those school principals that place high priority on curricular matters undoubtedly influence teacher and learner performance positively.

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