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Dr Ngwako Sebopetsa, the world’s number one principal

Written by Silusapho Nyanda

A Limpopo primary school principal has received global recognition.

Rathaga Primary  School principal, Dr Ngwako Sebo­petsa, recently received the Global Principal Award from India-based Alert Knowledge Service for excellence in school leadership and management skills.

Based in the Mopani East District in Limpopo, the school’s learner enrolment has grown from 550 to over 800 under Sebopetsa’s guidance over the past five years.Principal Dr Ngwako Sebopetsa is in a class of his own when it comes to school leadership and management skills.

He says his passion for education has been well received by his learners, who made it possible for him to win the award.

“I am highly committed to my work and the learners’ performance is beyond expectations© This is an indication that parents are super satisfied with my leadership and management skills,” he says.

Sebopetsa’s award follows his recent success in the National Teaching Awards, where he received a certificate for being the best compliant principal in the Rakwadu 1 Circuit.

He says he received the certificate thanks to the relationships he has built with his colleagues, the school governing body and officials from the Department of Basic Education.

Sebopetsa’s relationship with learners and parents is one of being a mentor.

“They have confidence in me to resolve conflicts in such a way that all parties are satisfied. The school has a code of conduct, adopted by all stakeholders, to address problems such as bullying,” he says.

In 2013, Sebopetsa was appointed as the caretaker principal of Matome-Modika Secondary School. During his tenure, the pass rate increased from 25% to 75%.

To build such strong and successful relationships with schools, Sebopetsa says teachers should be passionate about the profession and work hand-in-hand with their communities.

He believes that teachers should lead the way by being educated themselves. Sebopetsa holds a Doctor of Education, specialising in education management, from the University of Venda.

“I have five degrees, five diplomas and many other certificates. I also authored a book titled ‘Communication with myself’ and various articles,” he says.

Sebopetsa is also a part-time Campus Coordinator at the University of the Free State.