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Online School Self-evaluation Instrument
Online School Self-evaluation Instrument

Prior to developing a School Improvement Plan, it is essential that school communities undertake School Self Evaluation, in accordance with the National Policy on Whole School Evaluation (Government Gazette Vol. 433: No. 22512 of 26 July 2001, Pretoria). Self-evaluation is a process of reflection on practice, made systematic and transparent, with the aim of improving learner performance, teaching practice and school functionality.

A total of 245 schools from eight provinces participated in the online SSE training. The training of 55 schools in the Eastern Cape was conducted in 2014, since General Motors South Africa (GMSA) is based in the Port Elizabeth area and has a strong historical presence in the province. The online SSE instrument was enthusiastically embraced by both the stakeholders representing schools as well as district and provincial officials.

The online school self-evaluation exercise will enable school communities to undertake a realistic and honest assessment of their school against the criteria within the nine areas of evaluation as set out in the WSE policy. This online process will produce a report which will highlight areas that each school has identified for urgent attention and subsequent school development.  The generated report will then be used by schools to work with their District office to develop a School Improvement Plan (SIP). The Circuit Manager, as supported by the District Office, has the responsibility to monitor and support the school in implementing the SIP. The online SSE is intended to promote efficiency, increase productivity and strengthen accountability.

In synchronisation with the National Development Plan, the Medium Term Strategic Framework (MTSF) prioritises strengthening accountability and improving management at the school, community and district level as well as partnerships for education reform and improved quality. Whole School Evaluation (WSE) is an initiative that is aimed at strengthening accountability and improving the basic functionality of schools. In the WSE policy, external evaluation is scheduled periodically, primarily for the purpose of verification, while school self-evaluation and related improvement planning should be undertaken annually by the school community. School self-evaluation has become central to school improvement efforts in many educational systems.

Basic annual management processes such as Budgeting, Annual reporting and School Improvement Planning are required to take place across all public schools in the country in a way that contributes towards a functional school environment (Action Plan to 2019: Towards Schooling 2025). Every school is required to have an annually updated School Improvement Plan, detailing what the key challenges of the school are and how they will be addressed.

During the six month period, the online SSE training was conducted as follows:



Total number of schools trained

North West

16 - 17 March 2015



18 - 19 March 2015


Northern Cape

20 - 21 April 2015


Free State

23 - 24 April 2015



06 - 07 May 2015



21 - 22 July 2015



30 - 31 July 2015


Western Cape

26 - 27 August 2015


The DBE and GMSAF will meet in October 2015 to renew the partnership agreement and develop plans to increase the online SSE footprint during the 2016 academic year. The DBE is advocating a new approach to the implementation of the WSE policy in schools through evidence-based school self-evaluation informing improvement planning by using modern information and computer technology.

Copyright: Department of Basic Education 2015