Instructional Leadership Challenges in Rural Multigrade Schools
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instructional leadership
rural schools
parental involvement

How to Cite

Taole, M., Mudau, P., Majola, X., & Mukhati, F. (2024). Instructional Leadership Challenges in Rural Multigrade Schools. Research in Educational Policy and Management, 6(1), 102-122.


School leadership is regarded as the cornerstone of the successful provisioning of quality education. This qualitative study draws from principals' accounts of their instructional leadership challenges in rural multigrade schools. The research, situated within an interpretivist paradigm and the theoretical lens of instructional leadership, sought to understand the challenges that principals experience as instructional leaders and how they mitigate the challenges they experience in their rural contexts. Ten purposively selected principals from rural multigrade schools situated in the Vhembe district of Limpopo province participated in the study. Data were generated through semi-structured interviews and were analysed using thematic analysis. The findings show that principals in rural multigrade schools do not participate in induction training to equip them with the knowledge and skill to commence their roles as principals. As a result, they struggle to balance their teaching and management roles. However, fostering teamwork with teachers may be a strategy that could assist principals in managing and successfully executing their duties. Lack of access to technological resources and staffing are serious concerns for the participants in their aim to provide quality education. Active parental involvement supports principals and teacher in their multigrade rural context. This study recommends that principals should undergo training for their role as principals in rural multigrade schools and training on multigrade pedagogies is recommended for both principals and teachers. Understanding challenges that principals in rural multigrade schools experience could help policymakers establish relevant policies that address leadership issues in rural schools.
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