An assessment of the implementation of teacher performance appraisal system in Zimbabwe: a study of 12 selected primary schools in Bulawayo Metropolitan Province

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University of Fort Hare


The massive campaign by Zimbabwe to educate all children was achieved through the “education for all” policy. When quantity had been achieved more focus was on quality issues. The quality concerns coincided with market-based developments which compelled Zimbabwe to adopt change reforms such as the teacher performance appraisal, one of which focused on quality teaching strategies that would enhance learners’ quality academic achievement. Nevertheless since its inception in 1996 and subsequent implementation in 2000, teachers through their unions have challenged the use of the appraisal which quantifies the teacher’s work, alleging their work cannot be atomized into separate elements to be measured, weighed and then ticked off. The contention highlighted above prompted the need for a research to be carried out which sought to assess: How is the performance appraisal system being implemented in the primary schools? A mixed methods design which is located in the postpositivist paradigm which produced in-depth, detailed, rich data from personal perspectives and experiences that resulted in realistic understanding, interpreted through the social and cultural context of the respondent’s lives. Educators resisted the imported system alleging it was imposed on them without adaptation to local environment. Lack of pilot-testing of the system, lack of proper training and lack of a meaningful reward system perverted the system to a mere ritual that frustrated implementers who found it difficult to use it in their daily work.



Education, Elementary -- Government policy -- Zimbabwe, Performance standards -- Zimbabwe, Elementary schools -- Zimbabwe, School management and organization -- Zimbabwe, Education and state -- Zimbabwe