Demokrasie en leerderraadsverkiesings by openbare skole: 'n Onderwysregtelike perspektief
The researcher observed that, despite legislation and legal principles, certain processes during the student council elections do not adhere to the principles of transparency, participation and accountability. A research need was identified to address and observe the gaps that have been observed. The research question investigated in this study was: To what extent do student council elections take place democratically, with specific reference to educational law principles? The researcher attempted to answer the overall research question based on the following secondary research questions set for the study: (1) What are the legal determinants and legal theory with regard to democratic student council elections? (2) What are educators' and learners' knowledge of and opinions on democratic student council elections? (3) To what extent do student council election processes take place democratically at schools? The empirical study used a quantitative research design in the form of survey research. Electronic questionnaires, based on the literature study, were used as a measuring instrument or data collection tool. The validity and reliability of the instrument were determined. The collected data was analysed by means of statistical analysis techniques that included frequency analyses, T-tests and ANOVAs. Descriptive and comparative statistics were used during the discussion of the results. The results were also discussed as fully as possible in an effort to make findings that would answer the research questions. The findings of the study were related to the following themes: • Participation ? only selected learner groups participate in the student council election process and enjoy voting rights. • Student Council Election Notice ? voters are informed of the proposed student council election only a day prior to the election. p• Campaigning and voting ? candidates are not given an opportunity to introduce themselves during the nomination process. • Applying learners in specific portfolios ? according to 50% of the respondents, student council members are almost never used in specific portfolios following the elections. • The voting process ? almost half of the respondents believed that the principal, the student council guardian and educators should have a deciding or majority vote. • Lack of knowledge about legislation and policies ? the results indicated that the respondents have little or no knowledge of the provincial election guidelines or the provisions of the SA Schools Act regarding student council elections. • Influencing of the learners who are entitled to vote ? the learner component of the voters was strongly convinced that influencing takes place during the election process. Voter training ? two-thirds of the respondents indicated that no voter training took place prior to the election process. The researcher made the following recommendation to address the findings of this study, the violation of rights and undemocratic practices: • National policy must be written to ensure a democratic student council election process, as student council elections differ from school to school and from one region to the next.
- Education