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Becoming a School Principal in South Africa – All you need to know

Becoming a School Principal in South Africa – All you need to know

School principals must have significant formal education. Learn about the education, job duties and licensure requirements to see if this is the right career for you. The principal of a school is like the center of a wheel. The principal keeps everything in line and in good working order. The principal is in charge of keeping the school working so that teachers, students, and support staff can function and complete their respective jobs. A principal needs to be a strong leader to staff, a fair hiring agent for new teachers and aides, an advocate to students, and a disciplinarian when necessary. A principal also serves as an intermediate between the county board of education and the school system in which they are employed.

Some of the core duties of a school principal include:

  • Leading the Learning School;
  • Shaping the Direction and Development of the School;
  • Managing Quality and Securing Accountability;
  • Developing and Empowering Self and Others;
  • Managing the School as an Organisation;
  • Working with and for the immediate school Community as well as the broader community;
  • Managing Human Resources (Staff) in the school; and
  • Management and advocacy of extra-curricular activities

School Principal Qualifications

  • Minimum requirement is a REQV14 qualification (matric + four years qualification)
  • Certification through the South African Council of Educators (SACE)-proof of registration required
  • Police clearance certificate required
  • Valid driver’s license and own transport essential
  • Seven years teaching experience

Essential experience and skills:

  • A minimum of 5 years’ experience on a school senior leadership team
  • Experience of leadership in a highly successful school that provides an outstanding education for its learners
  • A track record of leading successful learner interventions and improving learner outcomes
  • A track record of high expectations personally and professionally
  • Solid experience in performance management of staff
  • Sound knowledge of the South African Education Act and WCED policies and procedures
  • Experience in school governance, the management of resources and budgets
  • Excellent time management skills and an ability to multi-task and prioritise work
  • Be computer literate and MS Office proficient
FAQ

How to become a principal without being a teacher?

  • Teaching experience is essential

Do you have to be a teacher to be a principal?

  • Yes

How many years teaching experience to become principal?

  • 5 years +

Can i become a principal without becoming a teacher?

  • No

What are the reasons for becoming a principal?

  • Career growth

 

 View the list of Courses that will make you Becoming a School Principal in South Africa here