Maintaining Accurate Records in A School Environment: Less of Technical Concern and Much of a Management Imperative and Mandate
The study aimed to investigate the importance of maintaining accurate school records and is underpinned by the interpretivist paradigm and organizational effectiveness theories. The study is based on the Situational Leadership Theory and data gathering took the qualitative approach. Focused-group interviews were conducted on four (4) sampled school principals, two (2) Department of Basic Education (DBE) officials. School records were analyzed, and observations were conducted to support data gathered during interviews. Data from the interview were triangulated by observations, document analysis and a literature review. The reviewed literature indicated that the school principals, as heads of schools play a pivotal role and they are ably assisted by teachers, School Governing Bodies (SGBs), the community, DBE and the support staff to maintain accurate records. Record keeping in education, hence, is the responsibility of the collective. The findings of this research, however, established that, ninety (90.0%) per cent of school principals and teachers do not attach great value to keeping records in the school setting; therefore, the records were in shambles. It is recommended that it be stressed to the stakeholders that record keeping in education should not be one person’s responsibility but a system activity which needs positive and constructive contributions from all concerned. This will ensure a participatory approach to the activity. The researchers also recommend that the 10% enrolment increment factor be abolished as it creates a fertile ground for fake enrolments in schools. Principals need to work diligently on record-keeping and delegate responsibilities to various stakeholders to ensure that accurate records are maintained and are available on request.
Keywords: Source documents, organizational effectiveness, planning, accurate information