Greener Journal of Educational Research

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Mapolisa and Tshabalala

Greener Journal of  Educational Research Vol. 3 (7), pp. 354-362, September 2013

 ISSN: 2276-7789 

Research Paper

Manuscript Number: 070313700


Instructional Supervisory Practices of Zimbabwean School Heads


*1Tichaona Mapolisa, 2Thembinkosi Tshabalala


1National Programme Leader for the Bachelor of Education in Educational Management in the Faculty of Arts 

and Education at the Zimbabwe Open University.

2Senior Lecturer and National Programme Leader for the Master of Education in Educational Management in the Faculty of Arts and Education at the Zimbabwe Open University.


2Email: tshabalalathembinkosi @, Cell phone: +263 776 425 222


*1Email: tichmap @ / tichmapolisa @,

Cell phone: +263 733 608 577 or +263 775 987 351


Schools in developing countries including Zimbabwe face a host of problems related to the twin concepts of poor classroom instruction and low student achievement. According to (Boaduo, 2011a, Glanz, 2010), developing countries face common problems in providing sufficient education of high quality to their learners. Typically these challenges breakdown to matters of instructional supervision, teaching behaviours and general low learner performance. Given this context, it becomes necessary to construct new frameworks in the following aspects: teacher effectiveness, progressive models of supervision and effective leadership styles (Pajak, 2008). According to Boaduo (2011b), the search for instructional supervisory strategies that can deal with the lesson delivery capacities of teachers and poor performance of students of developing countries should be intensified. This study was therefore principally directed at investigating the instructional practices of Zimbabwean school heads of schools. The study adopted the descriptive survey design. The target population comprised of all teachers in primary schools in three of Zimbabwe’s educational provinces of the Midlands, Matabeleland North and Matabeleland South. The random sample procedure was employed. A total of seven hundred and forty eight (748) respondents were used of which three hundred and ninety-two (392) were female and three hundred and fifty-six (356) were male. The main findings indicated that the majority of heads did not understand the concept of instructional supervision. The study, further, revealed that teachers had negative attitudes towards instructional supervision; that heads of schools engage in the most current and pressing issues like financial management, sporting and grounds development at the expense of instructional supervision. The recommendations are that heads should use effective models of instructional supervision and commitment to long term process of staff development including the prioritization of their operations so that the bulk of their time is taken up by instructional supervision related activities to improve the worth of their teachers.
Keywords: Instructional supervision, Leadership, Heads, Teachers, Models of supervision.

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