Title page for ETD etd-04062010-154900

Document Type Master's Dissertation
Author Kanyane, Charity Modiane Bafedile
URN etd-04062010-154900
Document Title The politics of resistance in the implementation of integrated quality management system
Degree MEd
Department Curriculum Studies
Advisor Name Title
Prof S Howe Supervisor
  • professional development
  • developmental appraisal
  • accountability
  • integrated quality management system
  • classroom observation
  • evaluation
Date 2009-09-01
Availability unrestricted

The need to improve on the quality and equity in education has been a direct challenge for the Department of Education in the South African post-apartheid era. The Department of Education, in agreement with the Education Labour Relation Council, implemented the Integrated Quality Management System (IQMS) as a quality management system, consisting of three programmes, aimed at enhancing and monitoring performance of the education system.

The Integrated Quality Management System was the focus of this study and, in particular, the attitudes of educators towards Developmental Appraisal and Classroom Observation. The research was guided by the following three main research questions: What are the attitudes of educators towards Developmental Appraisal as an evaluation policy for accountability purposes? What are the attitudes of educators towards Classroom Observation as a practice for staff development with a developmental purpose? and To what extent do the attitudes of educators influence the implementation of Developmental Appraisal and Classroom Observation?

Several factors influencing the implementation of Integrated Quality Management Systems were identified from literature and were selected for the study, namely the objectives, prevalence and frequency, benefits and difficulties of Developmental Appraisal and Classroom Observation. These were conceptualized in terms of three opposing dimensions using the Cube Model of Evaluation: internal and external, pull and push and bottom-up and top-down, all of which have varying degrees of tensions between them. Thus a point of balance on this three-dimensional continuum has to be delicately managed.

The findings of this study, which resulted from analysing data collected from forty-four educators by means of questionnaires and semi-structured interviews, revealed the following: the overall conclusion regarding the educators' perceptions on the policy objectives of Developmental Appraisal is that the majority of the respondents tended to agree with the policy objective of Developmental Appraisal. However, one should take note of participants who did not agree, which illustrates the tension between policy and implementation and the possible resistance of educators.

The findings of this study further revealed that initially educators were 'threatened' by Internal and External Evaluation and Developmental Appraisal, weighing heavily on the Performance Management aspect, which could be seen as manifesting a resistance to change. However, over time and through deeper understanding, there has been a shift in attitude once educators realised the developmental function of Developmental Appraisal in informing teaching and learning which consequently plays a major role in educators' professional development. In addition, this may have a positive effect on the implementation of Developmental Appraisal in future.

However, the aspect of pressure, represented in the adapted model, is aimed at accountability of the various stakeholders within the schools to the Department of Education to ensure that quality education is provided. This suggests that there was a shift in the educators' attitudes from one of resistance to top-down directives to compliance and even a willingness to participate in the process of Developmental Appraisal and Classroom Observation. This could be a result of the monetary reward attached to performance. There was also a growing realisation of the potential effect on teaching and learning, which has resulted in the policy being viewed in a more positive light. However, there was concern about the lack of support, resources and facilities from the Department of Education, which resulted in the policy not being properly implemented.

Finally, the findings of this study bring another dimension to the issue of the politics of resistance towards Integrated Quality Management Systems, in that rejection of evaluation is not against the system per se; educators as represented by the South African Democratic Teachers' Union (SADTU) want appraisal to be an essential part of their development and not a mechanism for enforcing control or imposing a 'police unit' on educators.

Copyright 2008, University of Pretoria. All rights reserved. The copyright in this work vests in the University of Pretoria. No part of this work may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, without the prior written permission of the University of Pretoria.

Please cite as follows:

Kanyane, CMB 2008, The politics of resistance in the implementation of integrated quality management system, MEd dissertation, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, viewed yymmdd < http://upetd.up.ac.za/thesis/available/etd-04062010-154900/ >

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