Effectiveness of school heads in managing school funds in Tanzania’s public secondary schools: a case of Mbarali district council

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University of Dar es Salaam
The purpose of this study was to establish the effectiveness of school heads in managing school funds in public secondary schools in Tanzania. The objectives of the study were to; examine the legal and policy establishment of the roles of school heads in managing school funds in public secondary schools; examine the extent to which school heads are trained to handle financial matters; examine the effectiveness of school heads’ managerial practices in managing school funds in public secondary schools and; determine the challenges that school heads experience regarding financial management. The study was based on a formal model and Henry Fayol Administrative theory. The study used mixed method and the research design employed was embedded case study research design. The target population of this study comprised 16 public secondary schools in Mbarali District. The sample size included 6 public secondary schools, 6 school heads, 6 school board chairpersons, 60 teachers, 12 student leaders, 1 District Secondary Education Officer (DSEO), 1 District Treasurer (DT) and 1 District Internal Auditor (DIT) which resulted to 87 respondents. The study used purposive sampling for selecting DSEO, DT, DIT, School board chair persons, school heads and students’ leaders. Simple random sampling was used to select teachers in the sampled school to answer the questionnaire provided. Questionnaire, interview schedules and documentary review guide were used for data collection. Data collected was analyzed using Content Analysis to identify analyses and interpret qualitative information collected from respondents. Data with quantitative information were processed (edited, classified and coded) and analyzed using descriptive statistics through the use of Statistical Package for Social Sciences. Various descriptive statistics tools like frequencies, percentages, tables, pie-charts and bar graphs were used to arrive at conclusions. According to the Financial Act of 2010 the school head is the chief accounting officer of the school and is responsible to the school board for the control and use of school money but it was found out that majority of the school heads (59%) lack knowledge on their roles in financial management. 83% of respondents established that school heads in Mbarali District Council were not adequately trained in financial management; it was also found that school heads in Mbarali District were not so effective in managing school funds. They faced several challenges in managing school funds, among them inadequate training in financial management, delayed disbursement of capitation grants, lack of skills and knowledge in school budget preparation, lack of auditing skills and lack of financial management staff. The findings of the study established that qualified financial management staff leads to more efficient and effective financial management. The findings led to the conclusion that the ineffective management of school funds in most public secondary schools visited was caused by insufficient knowledge of school heads’ roles regarding financial management and inadequate training in financial management. The study recommends that school heads should be adequately and frequently trained to enable them manage school finances effectively and the government should employ bursars and account clerks for schools.
Available in print form, East Africana Collection, Dr. Wilbert Chagula Library, Class mark (THS EAF LB2831.926.T34B66)
Cost control, Finance, School management and organization, Public schools, Secondary schools, Mbarali district council, Tanzania, School principals
Boniphace, W. (2016) Effectiveness of school heads in managing school funds in Tanzania’s public secondary schools: a case of Mbarali district council, Master dissertation, University of Dar es Salaam, Dar es Salaam