Private School Headmasters In Pakistan Education Essay

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Abstract

In this study the opinions of Public and Private School Head Masters in Hyderabad (Pakistan) have been collected through a questionnaire. The Chi square test was used to analyze the data. The analysis of data revealed many differences on the part of Head Teachers, teachers and parents on important decisions made at schools. Difference between Public and Private Schools were also linked through literature review.

Introduction

School-based or site-based management (SBM) is a strategy to bring positive change in education by delegating important decision-making authority from province and district offices to the heads of the school.

SBM provides Head Teachers, teachers, students and parents' greater control over the education process by giving them responsibility for decisions about the budget, personnel and the curriculum. Through the involvement of teachers, parents and other community members in these key decisions, SBM can create more effective learning environments for children through shared decision-making model, engaging various stakeholders and facilitators rather than directive leadership.

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School based management all the stake holders of school including parents and teachers, maximum control on the activities and education process assignation them the responsibility of decision making related to admission procedures, budget, assessment, curriculum and other related activities of school. With the involvement of these stakeholders in the process of decoction making teaching learning process become more smooth and effective and it create viable learning environment for children. Through this model shared decision-making take place instead of directive leadership.

Origins of SBM

The philosophy of school-based management has its roots in trade and industry. During last half of the 20th century, the practice of sharing of power to workers shows much benefits to the industries where this practice took place. The same practice was repeated in the Japan where car manufacture industries achieved maximum profits by giving their workers powers of decision-making. In the same way in the U.S many factories gave the right of decision making to the workers in their jobs and were successful in their effectiveness. Tom Peters gave much appreciation to this practice, which was taking place in white-collar and blue-collar environments. After successful fusion of this practice, the same principles were used in schools with the name of School Based Management.

Advantages of School Based Management

According to the American Association of School Administrators (AASA), and other agencies, the School Based Management can:

Permit important stake holders to participate the decision making in the school for improvement of learnining.

Bring all school community in the decision making process;

Bring accountability in the decision of school.

Inculcate the creativity at larger level in the design and implementation of programs;

Use available resources for achievement of the objectives designed and developed in each school;

lead the actual proposals and budget because parents teachers and other members of the community will be present to see the finiancial status of the school. Spending limitations and the cost of its programs; and

Improve ethics and morale of heads and teachers and develop new leadership at all levels.

Many researchers who propagate this system of decentralization in the favour of the superiority of this type of design over centralized designs (Murphy, 1991):

through this system parents, teachers and society is ginven role in the decidion making because of this decentralized system:

Through decentralization greater levels of professional development and commitment is achieved by allowing teachers to give a voice in decision making.

The decisions at bottom level and at the levels of students, results in better outcomes. Actually the decision taken at bottom level is near to the needs of students and teachers.

Through decentralization in schools promote efficiency in utilization and management of resources.

This practice lessens the bureaucratic authority over schools. Through decentralization practices it is considered that potentials become more responsive to all the stake holders than bureaucratic kind of managements.

Since bureaucracies are perceived to be ineffective in meeting the needs of students, decentralized structures are considered to have the potential to be more responsive to student needs than are bureaucratic organizational forms.

According to Murphy and Beck (1995) school based management means one of following strategy. First is administrative control in which head of the school is the main decision maker. Second, professional control. In professional control decision teachers mainly take making process. Third is community or parent control. In this form of management members of community and parents make decision. According to Malen and Ogawa the fourth popular form is balanced control.. (Hanson & Ulrich, 1994, Malen & Ogawa, 1988). According to this form of Management type, attempt is made to make a balance of decision making process among parents, teachers, head teachers and community members. In the context of New Jersey a model of balanced desicion making was created in which all the stake holders of school were given. According to this model it was made obligatory that the presence of all the members of or stakeholder will be 50 percent representation in decision making process.

Public and Private School in Pakistan

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After creation of Pakistan Government started its interference in education. At the time of independence most of the education structure of Pakistan was consists of private schools and local schools manage and run by local owners or district councils or Municipalities of cities. this system of education was decentralized and provisional or federal ministries had a very limited role to play. (Ahmed and Mirza, 1975).

The seniaroo started to change in 1962 with the growth of centralization trend in this country. The schools, which were working under the local bodies, were brought under the control and management of federal and provincial ministries. However in urban area societies some schools were left under municipal controls.

Changes in government policy in the late 1960's and early 1970's have focused largely on the regulation and financing of private schools. Thus, it is difficult to assess broader issues regarding the decentralization of public schools and the role of local / municipal authorities in educational financing and administration.

With the passage of time Govenrment intervention in the education system, particularly in private sector was reached at peck point in 1972. During this year all large private factories and other enterprises were nationalized. All the private schools also were nationalized with regulation 118 of Martial Law. (Government of Punjab, 1982). According to this regulation all the schools, colleges along with buildings and other assets were taken by provincial and federal governments without paying any compensation to their owners.

A few schools in spite of this regulation were escaped which were not taken by the movement. Those schools were eight religious schools or some elite schools present in the posh areas of large cities. The Aitchison College of Lahore and Public School Hyderabad was some of those schools.

There were 3814 private schools in 1968 but the number remained 927 in 1977.

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Table - 1

Government and Private Educational Institutions 1971 - 78

Schools (Primary and Secondary)

Colleges

Year

Govt.

Private

% Private

Govt.

Private

% Private

1972-73

54,296

2,198

4.1

244

90

37.4

1973-74

55,726

2,182

3.9

337

17

5.0

1974-75

56,034

2,317

4.1

336

25

4.7

1975-76

58,527

2,103

3.6

380

24

6.4

1976-77

60,437

927

1.5

417

17

4.1

Source: Calculated from Pakistan, 1979

The new government in 1979 changed its policy of decentralization and the ban on privatisation of schools and colleges was lifted. The new National Education Policy was announced and individuals and group of persons were permitted to open their own schools and institutions. The owners were given permission to open the schools with a condition to fulfil certain conditions for a school e.g. proper building, library, laboratory, play grounds qualified teachers and other facilities . (p.26). additionally private sector was given more facilities in sixth five year plan (1883-88). According to this plan the decision of return of private schools to their owners was accepted with the assurance of quality and effectiveness of education. Government of Pakistan, 1983). The Government of Pakistan in addition to this also proclaimed its intention to help and encourage the private schools through grants and aids and decentralizing institutions of public education..

At present private sector is playing a key role in educating the youth from primary school to university level. The schools in private sectors are independent in many decisions at school level, and school based management in a way can be seen in those schools.

Current Policies

The present emphasis on decentralization and privatization is motivated in part by the failures of past policies. The greatest problems were indentified as follows in the sixth five-year plan (Government of Pakistan, 1983a):

The nearly comprehensive nationalization of educational institutions and the accompanying policy of free education ten years ago had at least two casualties. An already impoverished Government ten years ago had at least two casualties. An already impoverished Government was landed with a large financial burden which restricted it from expanding education. And many of the schools of high quality, some of them run by education-conscious communities, lost their excellence under the public control. This, in both quality and quality, was counter productive (pp.318-9). Public spending on education in fact declined steadily as a share of total government spending - from 7.4 percent in 1965 to 5.0 percent in 1980 (UNESCO, 1974 and 1984). Correspondingly, the enrolment ratio at all levels of education grew slowly. Thus, contrary to the international evidence showing that investing in education yields high social returns (Psacharopoulos, 1985), the sector received low priority in the allocation of government spending. Another efficiency loss is that despite the lower social payoffs to higher education relative to other levels (Jimenez and Tan, 1985), it tended to receive more resources than is economically justified. A recent assessment of the situation noted that "while the base of the pyramid did not grow satisfactorily, its top was raised further by the opening of new colleges and universities" Government of Pakistan, 1983b. P.50). Under funding of primary schooling was so server that a significant number of children now attend "shelter-less" schools - that is, schools without buildings. The misallocation of resources stem in part from the forces affecting decision making in a centralized system of education: the expansion of higher education satisfied the demands of the more articulate socio-economic groups, and it worked in the interest of the policy makers themselves. Inefficiency also resulted from the sharp deterioration in school maintenance under nationalization. In many places, school buildings have fallen into such disrepair that it became safer for classes to meet outdoors (United Consultants Ltd., 1984). And the conditions at some nationalized schools were so deteriorated as to discourage their original owners from reclaiming the property. In the past, communities participated in school maintenance because schools belonged tot he local district; but when the government took over the incentives for local participation weakened considerably.

Research Question

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The following research question has been addressed in the study. Is there any significant difference in extending to which school-based management has been experienced in public and private elementary schools in Hyderabad (Pakistan)?

Procedures and Methods

Sample

In this study, 145 primary school Head masters were included in the survey. Of these 145 Head Masters, 80 questionnaires were completed by public primary school Head Masters and 65 questionnaires were completed by private primary school Head Masters.

Instrumentation

Primary School Head Masters were asked to complete self-administered questionnaires during February 2005. They were asked to provide information on the physical, managerial and financial characteristics of their schools and on the school's teaching and learning environment.

The survey tool was divided into six sections. Those questions were to be answered by Head teacher or its nominee was able to provide related information.

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Table - 1

Public and Private School Head Masters Responses Regarding the Influence of Decision Makers on the Hiring and Firing of Teachers

Decision Makers

Public

Private

Administrator Input to Hiring / Firing Teachers

No Influence

64

01

Some Influence

08

06

Major Influence

08

58

Teacher Input To Hiring / Firing Teachers

No Influence

70

60

Some Influence

04

03

Major Influence

06

02

Parent Input to Hiring / Firing Teachers

No Influence

75

62

Some Influence

02

02

Major Influence

03

03

Table - 2

Public and Private School Head Masters Responses Regarding the Influence of Decision Makers on Selecting Textbooks

Decision Makers

Public

Private

Administrator Input on Selecting Textbooks

No Influence

72

03

Some Influence

06

08

Major Influence

02

54

Teacher Input on Selecting Textbooks

No Influence

73

47

Some Influence

05

08

Major Influence

02

10

Parent Input on Selecting Textbooks

No Influence

08

57

Some Influence

00

03

Major Influence

00

05

Table - 3

Public and Private School Head Masters Responses Regarding the Influence of Decision Makers on Selecting Curricular Guidelines and Standards

Decision Makers

Public

Private

Administrator Input on Selecting Curricular Guidelines and Standard

No Influence

05

02

Some Influence

07

08

Major Influence

68

55

Teacher Input on Setting Curricular Guidelines and Standards

No Influence

18

05

Some Influence

15

03

Major Influence

57

57

Parent Input on Selecting Curricular Guidelines and Standards

No Influence

79

58

Some Influence

05

03

Major Influence

01

04

Table - 4

Public and Private School Head Masters Responses Regarding the

Establishing Policies and Practices for Student Grading / Evaluation

Decision Makers

Public

Private

Administrator Input on Establishing Policies and

Practices for Student Grading / Evaluation

No Influence

67

05

Some Influence

07

02

Major Influence

06

58

Teacher Input on Establishing Policies and

Practices for Student Grading / Evaluation

No Influence

40

04

Some Influence

10

16

Major Influence

30

45

Parent Input on Establishing Policies and

Practices for Student Grading / Evaluation

No Influence

47

60

Some Influence

08

03

Major Influence

25

02

Table - 5

Public and Private School Head Masters Responses Regarding the Influence of Decision Makers on Deciding How School Discretionary Funds

Decision Makers

Public

Private

Administrator Input on Deciding How School Discretionary Fundswill be Spent

No Influence

04

03

Some Influence

08

05

Major Influence

68

57

Teacher Input on Deciding How School Discretionary Funds

No Influence

72

71

Some Influence

05

06

Major Influence

03

30

Parent Input on Deciding How School Discretionary Funds

No Influence

76

61

Some Influence

03

03

Major Influence

01

01

Table - 5

Public and Private School Head Masters Responses Regarding

Professional Development

Decision Makers

Public

Private

Administrator Input on Professional Development

No Influence

10

02

Some Influence

05

08

Major Influence

55

55

Teacher Input on Professional Development

No Influence

16

05

Some Influence

22

12

Major Influence

42

48

Parent Input on Professional Development

No Influence

18

02

Some Influence

16

20

Major Influence

46

43

Pearson chi-squares were calculated to evaluate the degree to which differences were present between public and private school Head Masters for each individual decision and each individual decision-maker. This procedure permitted specific differences in the views of headmasters in the public and private schools.

Administrator Input

Six Pearson chi-squares were calculated to present the views of public and private school Head Masters in each of the six decision categories. The first chi-square revealed a statistically significant difference between public and private elementary school Head Teachers in the degree of Head Teacher influence relating establishing criteria for the hiring and firing of teachers. X2(2) = 98.73 = 01. As reported in Table - 1. Private elementary school Head Teachers (58) revealed they had significantly more influence in the hiring and firing of teachers then was revealed by the public elementary school Head Teachers (08). A second chi-square revealed a statistically significant difference in the degree of Head Teacher influence concerning the selection of textbooks. X2(2) = 111.7, = .01. As defined in Table - 2, private elementary school Head Teachers, (54) revealed they had significantly more influence in the selection of textbooks than was revealed by public elementary school Head Teachers (02). A third chi-square did not show the presence of a statistically significant difference in the degree of Head Teacher influence in the setting of curricular guidelines and standards, x2(2) = 1.187, = .01. As defined in Table - 3 private elementary school Head Teachers (55) revealed that they had a slightly less influence in the setting of curricular goals than was revealed by the public elementary school Head Teachers (68).

In the fourth chi-square, a statistically significant difference was noted in the degree of Head Teacher influence on maintaining policies and practices for student grading and evaluation, x2(2) = 97.9, =.01. As shown in Table - 4, private elementary school Head Teachers (58) revealed that they had significantly more influence in establishing policies and practices for grading and evaluation than was reported by the public elementary school Head Teachers (6).

In terms of school funds, no statistically significant difference was noted between public and private elementary school Head Teachers. See Table - 5 for exact responses. relating professional development, this chi-square did not provide a statistically significant difference in the degree of Head Teacher influence between public and private elementary school Head Teachers. x2(2) = 6.72, = .01. As defined in Table - 6 private elementary school head Teachers (55) revealed that there is not significant influence in professional development than was shown by the public elementary school Head Teachers. See Table - 6 for exact responses.

Teacher Input

Another chi-square did not reveal a statistically significant difference between public and private elementary school Head Teachers in the degree of teacher influence relating establishment of criteria for the hiring and firing of teachers. See Table - 1 for exact responses. A second chi-square yielded a statistically significant difference in the degree of teacher influence relating the selection of textbooks. X2(2) = 10.21, = .01. As describe in had significantly more influence in the selection of textbooks than was revealed by the public elementary school Head Teachers(2). A third chi-square revealed the presence of a statistically significant difference in the degree of teacher influence in the setting of curricular standards. x2(2) = 11.618, = .0001. As defined in Table - 3, private elementary school Head Teacher (57) revealed that they had significantly more influence in the setting of curricular guidelines and standards that was revealed by the public elementary school Head Teachers (57). A fourth chi-square yielded a statistically significant difference in the degree of teacher input on Establishing Policies and Practices for Student Grading x2(2) = 32.637, = .01. As defined in Table significantly more influence in the selection of textbooks than was revealed by the public elementary school Head Teachers (30).

Parent Input

Another chi-square did not reveal a statistically significant difference between public and private elementary school Head Teachers in the degree of parent influence regarding establishing criteria for the hiring and firing of teachers. See Table - 1 for responses. A second chi-square yielded a statistically significant difference in the degree of parent influence regarding the selection of textbooks. X2 (2) = 10.421, = .01. As defined in Table - 2, private elementary school Head Teachers (5) revealed that they had significantly more influence in the selection of textbooks than was revealed by private elementary school Head Teachers (00). A third chi-square did not reveal a statistically significant difference in degree of parent influence in the setting of curricular guidelines and standards. See Table - 3. In the fourth chi-square, a statistically significant difference was practices for student grading and evaluation. X2 (2) = 22.13 = .01. As shown in Table - 4, public elementary school Head Teachers (25) revealed that they had significantly more influence in establishing policies and practices for grading and evaluation than was reported by the private elementary school Head Teachers(2). In terms of school discretionary funds, no statistically significant difference was noted between public and private elementary school Head Teacher. See Table - 5 for exact responses. Regarding professional development, a statistically significant difference was noted between public and private elementary school Head Teachers. X2(2) = 11.92, = .01 as shown in Table - 6 for exact responses percentages.

Discussion

It was revealed from above analysis that private schools in Pakistan are more independent in many decisions regarding daily school matters. Private school-head teachers have more influence on hiring and firing of staff, selection of textbooks and setting of school policies, and on the other hand public schools are run by district administration, and almost all the decision are taken by EDO's and ADOE's at District and Subdivision level. There is very less role of teacher and parents in private schools but any role of parents or teachers is not seen in public schools.

Though centralized system of education is good at some extent but cannot solve the day to day problems of a school. Each school works under a different circumstance, and Head or teachers may be given some authority to handle the matters of the school. They should be delegated some authority to decide the main matters of school or design the policies of the school.