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Hundreds of days’ training, thousands of kilometres on the road still worthwhile investment, says FEDSAS about annual training
25/10/2019 - FEDSAS
Almost 15000  participants were involved in the various training sessions, discussion meetings and school visits of the Federation of Governing Bodies of South African Schools (FEDSAS) since January this year. Of the nearly 530 training sessions more than 60 were online, while more than 1100 school visits also took place.

“As an important role-player FEDSAS is involved in many education matters, but the organisation’s main focus will always be the development of skilled school governing bodies of public schools. More than 2000 school governing bodies are members of FEDSAS and the more than 25 000 people who serve on these governing bodies are our priority,” says Dr Jaco Deacon, Deputy CEO of FEDSAS. Deacon says FEDSAS staff members present training to the equivalent of 300 business days every day. “An average year has about 250 business days, which is an indication of the scope of the training and support FEDSAS offers its members.”

The recognition that FEDSAS enjoys as a leader in school governance is clear from the 38 meetings with more than 400 officials of provincial education departments. “It is important to have a good relationship with provincial education departments. We are playing on the same team; we are not opponents. FEDSAS therefore readily shares its expertise and experience with officials.”

Training to governing bodies range from induction sessions for new members and advanced training for existing members to sessions developed specifically for high school learners who serve on governing bodies. FEDSAS’ number of online training sessions also increases every year. This year has already seen some 60 webinars being presented with topics including, among others, finances, human resources, discipline and values, robotics and coding, social media, school safety, meeting procedures and committee structures as well as relevant legislation and policy. “The webinars are very popular as these save time and money. The average duration is an hour and participants only require internet access. The webinars are live so presenters are able to answer questions as well.”

Deacon says the new FEDSAS E-learning platform that was introduced recently is already attracting a lot of attention. The platform uses e-learning to present courses. Participants complete the courses in their own time, which makes it possible to include more in-depth information.

“There are quite a number of training opportunities still available for the rest of the year. FEDSAS has offices in all nine provinces or those who are interested can visit our website at www.fedsas.org.za for more detail,” says Deacon.