Managing classroom discipline in primary school in the Ngaka Modiri Molema district
This study was underpinned by the view of the researcher that classroom discipline is gradually collapsing in South African schools. Learners seem to be uncontrollable thus affecting the quality of teaching and learning. Educators worldwide have many responsibilities in managing classroom discipline and shaping the behaviour of learners in schools. For educators to undertake these many responsibilities there is need for them to carryout effective teaching and learning through maintaining a disciplined classroom without enforcing corporal punishment. This might seem difficult from the view of certain attitudes learners display in classroom, but it is possible if educators are groomed with contemporary classroom discipline strategies which conform to the demands of the Department of Education. The study investigated the phenomenon of managing classroom discipline in Ngaka Modiri Molema District to determine the extent to which educators are conversant with the legal framework for managing classroom discipline and to determine strategies currently employed by educators to establish discipline in the classroom. The study also state and describe disciplinary challenges currently faced by educators in the classroom and make recommendations and guidelines on the findings with regard to managing classroom discipline. A literature review was done on conceptual literature relating to issues on managing classroom discipline. Learner's misconduct in class, causes of disciplinary problems and how to prevent and manage classroom discipline by applying the legal framework in class was also reviewed. The research approach was qualitative. Purposively selected participants included experienced teachers and student members of school student governments (prefects) of two purposefully selected schools. Views and experience of participants to this study were captured and explained through interviews, observations and document analysis. Results are discussed in relation to relevant literature, allowing the flow of an open coding process in inductive qualitative analysis. Findings from the research indicated that participants are experiencing varying forms of continued ill discipline in their classrooms. Some of which are; learners not doing their school and homework, absenteeism, disruption of classes by noise making, learners bullying fellow learners and even educators. Literature review revealed that there are nationwide guidelines and legal framework for managing discipline in schools as embedded in SASA. Participants know the guidelines and a legal framework for managing discipline in classrooms that has been used to design a school code of conduct and classroom rules. Most educators are not very conversant with the legal framework for managing classroom discipline except for the fact that they know they are not allowed to use corporal punishment. The findings of this study suggested that educators, through the help of the Department of Education, should familiarise themselves with legal documents on managing discipline in order for them to establish and maintain positive classroom discipline management.
- Education