n Africa Education Review - Empowering school-based management through decentralised financial control




This article focuses on decentralisation of financial control as a strategy used to develop school-based management (SBM) and improve performance. SBM is a management mechanism aimed at improving schools by shifting decision-making powers regarding the budget from the central level to the schools (Raywind 1990, 142). The article examines the role of the state in decentralisation by exploring the current South African education policy on this aspect of educational reform as expressed through the (RSA 1998). The policy was designed in response to the demands for educational reform and restructuring initiatives.

A common feature in the implementation of this policy is the devolution of decision-making authority over the management of resources to schools. This includes devolution of state-allocated budgets and delegation of financial management responsibilities to school-based financial management structures through the district as a primary education service delivery system for the state. To assist both the district and the school in carrying out their responsibilities, a model for school-based financial management is presented in this article.


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