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2024 School Governing Body Elections

Make your vote count!

March 2024

According to the South African Schools Act, governing bodies must be elected every three years. The objective of the governing body is to ensure that properly elected, competent, and committed individuals take on governance responsibility for our public schooling system. Elections will take place in March 2024.

Principals will advise parents on the date of the school's election.

Governing bodies are critical to:
  • improving the quality of education in a school;
  • giving all stakeholders a say in school governance, and ensuring accountability;
  • ensuring that the school serves the best interests of learners, parents and the broader community, and
  • ensuring good governance.
Governing bodies are entrusted to take decisions on a range of important issues, including:
  • deciding the admission policy of the school;
  • deciding the language policy of the school;
  • establishing a policy on religion at the school;
  • adopting a code of conduct and constitution;
  • the school’s constitution and mission statement;
  • administering and controlling the school’s property and budget;
  • recommending staff appointments; and
  • supporting principals and teachers in ensuring quality education.

It is important for all parents to play a role in their child’s school. This includes participating in governing body elections, standing for elections or electing members that will ensure good governance, and safeguarding the resources meant for the improvement of quality teaching and learning.

Modes of Election

The election of a governing body must be undertaken by:

  1. a manual election;
  2. an e-election.

e-Election means a governing body election in which electronic means are used in one or more stages.

A manual election is a full day election in which parents physically come to the venue to cast their votes at any time within the allocated hours of the day without any meeting being held.

Schools must decide what mode of election they will offer.

In the case of a manual election, schools may allocate timeslots when parents visit the school to physically cast their vote.

Both modes take place over one full day that must start at 7:00 and end at 20:00.

The Voting Process

Who is involved?

  • The provincial elections coordinator is responsible for ensuring that the election is promoted and complies with provincial procedures;
  • The district electoral officer coordinates the elections in the district; and
  • The school electoral officer prepares the notice and logistics around the election.<div>
Voters’ Roll
The voters’ role for each category of elected members to serve on the governing body must be made available and contain the names of eligible parents, educators, members of staff and learners. The voters’ roll will close 48 hours before the voting day.
Notice of election
The school electoral officer must prepare a notice in which the date, time and place of the nomination and election of parent governing body members must be stated. The nomination and election must take place in one meeting. The notice must be given at least 14 days before the nomination and election meeting.
Nomination process
A candidate may only be nominated and seconded by a person belonging to the same governing body membership category to which the candidate belongs.
A quorum of 10% of parents on the voters’ roll is needed for the nomination and election meeting to proceed. If the quorum is not met at the meeting, it must be rescheduled for another day and the same process, as described above, must be repeated. A notice for the second election meeting should clearly state that no quorum is required this time around.
Casting of votes
A person with the right to vote must record their vote on a ballot paper in secrecy and deposit the folded ballot paper in a box or other closed container provided for the purpose. It is strongly recommended that a proper ballot box be used, but the electoral officer and school principal may improvise if there is no official ballot box.
After the election
The school electoral officer must notify each elected member in writing of their election to the governing body and notify the principal to inform parents of the election results within 14 days of the election meeting.
Election of office bearers
The school principal must convene the first meeting of the governing body no more than 14 days after notification of the election results. At the first governing body meeting, members must elect office bearers including the chairperson, treasurer and secretary.