Citizen Leader Lab Launches new School Management Team Leadership Programme

Citizen Leader Lab, a non-profit dedicated to leadership development, is proud to unveil its new School Management Team (SMT) leadership programme this February. Acknowledging the crucial role SMT leaders play in the overall success of a school, this programme is designed to enhance, empower and elevate their leadership skills.

SMT leaders are the backbone of effective school management, overseeing critical aspects such as school curriculum management, teacher supervision and School Improvement Plans (SIPs). In tandem with school principals, they play a pivotal role in shaping well-run schools that support quality teaching and learning.

CEO of Citizen Leader Lab, Komala Pillay, said: ‘’The SMT programme forms part of Citizen Leader Lab’s overall strategy to deepen impact in the education sector. The programme is a testament to our 14-year commitment to this, and complements our renowned Leaders for Education (previously Partners for Possibility) programme which empowers and supports public school principals across South Africa.’’

Citizen Leader Lab’s SMT programme stands out with its unique peer-to-peer learning which creates a collaborative environment for SMT leaders to share experiences, insights and best practices with each other. The year-long programme is based upon the internationally recognised 70:20:10 learning model that combines action learning, social learning and coaching, with formal workshops to ensure maximum impact on the leaders.

In 2023, a successful pilot in Tshwane demonstrated the programme’s efficacy. One clear outcome was that SMT leaders felt more confident by the programme’s conclusion.

Citizen Leader Lab’s Coach Supervisor and Co-Designer of the SMT programme, Kay Moodley, explained: ‘’Confidence is a key quality for SMT leaders because it directly impacts their ability to lead and bring about positive change in their schools. When SMT leaders are confident in themselves, they are better able to support their respective school principals. A supported school principal is a successful school principal.’’

‘’We witnessed how the programme challenges conventional notions about SMT leaders. Principalship is seen as the natural progression for these leaders, however, this programme encourages them to consider alternative career paths such as becoming district officials. This has the power to diversify and ultimately improve the whole schooling system,’’ added Moodley.

The inaugural group of SMT leaders is sponsored by the Capitec Foundation. The Foundation funded the successful pilot in Tshwane, which saw 18 leaders from 5 schools participate. To date, Capitec has also fully funded 67 public school principals and 24 private sector business leaders to participate in Citizen Leader Lab’s Leaders for Education programme.

In 2024, the Foundation will continue its support for partner schools across Gauteng, Mpumalanga, Limpopo, Free State, KwaZulu Natal, Eastern Cape and Western Cape to strengthen school leadership capacity—a key precursor towards improving learning outcomes.

Dr Mariette Myburgh, an experienced Strategy Advisor, Life and Executive Coach and Mediator, will facilitate the SMT leadership programme.

Launch Date and Contact Information

Citizen Leader Lab’s SMT leadership programme launches on 8 February 2024 in Tshwane. For more information about the programme or to inquire about partnerships, please contact:

Dorcas Dube, National Marketing and Communications Manager for Citizen Leader Lab


About Citizen Leader Lab

Founded in 2010, Citizen Leader Lab is dedicated to creating resilient leaders in the public and private sectors. Through leadership development programmes and workshops, we empower individuals to be effective change agents in their communities. With over 13 years of experience, we continue to grow our presence in education and extend our influence into critical public sectors, promoting cross-sector collaboration, active citizenship and social cohesion.