School Management: The importance of democratic and participatory management in Brazilian public schools

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NASCIMENTO, Francimária Santana de Sousa [1]

NASCIMENTO, Francimária Santana de Sousa. School Management: The importance of democratic and participatory management in Brazilian public schools. Revista Científica Multidisciplinar Núcleo do Conhecimento. Year 05, Ed. 09, Vol. 07, pp. 75-83. September 2020. ISSN: 2448-0959, Access link:


Getting the school community to participate in the management process in Brazilian public schools has been a yearning and also one of the great challenges of school management today, because it is only through the active participation of all the people who are part of the educational process. that it can be said that in fact there is a democratic and participatory school management. This article has as main objective to show in a dialogical and analytical way what management is, how it happens and what is the importance of having a democratic and participative management in the Brazilian public school and how it can collaborate in the construction of a quality education and that it will contribute to the social transformation of the community as a whole, making everyone know and know its real role and its importance within this process. It will be discussed about the role of the school manager and the importance of planning in the participatory democratic management process. For this, a bibliographic research was done in which the contribution of authors such as Dourado (2001) was sought; Libâneo (2018); Lück (2011) and the National Education Guidelines and Bases Law (LDB) law No. 9394/96.

Keywords: Democratic and participative management, school community, manager, planning.


Throughout the school’s history, it can be said that the community has been estranged and one wants to have an effective participation in school and educational management. This was seen as a responsibility only of school managers in which they had to worry about the organizational culture, set goals and seek results, becoming the center of the school’s educational process, making democratic and participative management not happen, that is, it did not exist in the school context, all decisions were made by the manager who previously received the name of principal. However, with the Federal Constitution of 1988 and with Law 9.394 / 96, which establishes the principle of democratic management in public schools in the country, democratic and participatory management starts to have a great focus and also a great discussion of how to do with that all the social actors that are part of the school community participate in school management, even if a long time has passed in which there is debate and attempts to implement democratic and participative management in schools, there is still a certain difficulty in the participation of all those involved in that process.

In order for the democratic and participatory management to be implemented in Brazilian public schools, everyone involved, both the school community and the local community and society in general, needs to know and understand the importance of democratic participatory management as it happens. and what is your role and the importance of your participation in this process.

With the objective of dialoguing and analyzing how it happens and develops and what is the importance of having a democratic and participative management within the Brazilian public school, this work was developed, based on a bibliographic research in which the same search through a contribution theoretician of authors such as Dourado (2001), Libâneo (2008) Lück (2011) and the Law of Directives and Bases of National Education (LDB) law nº 9394/96, to conceptualize what is democratic management? What is the importance of participatory management? What is the importance of the manager and planning in school management? We will start the discussion, conceptualizing management and its importance in the process of building democratic and participative management in Brazilian public schools.


It is necessary to conceptualize management, which is understood as an activity by which means and procedures are mobilized to achieve the objectives of the organization, basically involving managerial and technical-administrative aspects, that is, management presupposes to involve people in the school case. in educational processes aimed at meeting a social demand.

Management is a process of mobilizing the competence and energy of collectively organized people so that, through their active and competent participation, they promote the achievement, as fully as possible, of the objectives of their work unit, in this case the educational objectives. The understanding of the concept of management, therefore, based on the maximization of social processes as a force and impetus for the promotion of changes, already presupposes, in itself, the idea of ​​participation, that is, of the associated and cooperative work of people. in the analysis of situations, in the decision-making about their forwarding and in the action on them, together, based on organizational objectives understood and embraced by all. (LÜCK, 2011, p. 21).

With this, it is understood that management is a very important process, because it mobilizes everyone who is or who is part of a context, be it social or educational and for this mobilization to happen, it is necessary that this management be inserted in a democratic perspective in the which has been one of the most present elements in the debates of education professionals, because it is only with the participation of all those involved in the educational process, actively contributing and collaborating and involved in decision-making, which concern the school and education is that education as a whole can be improved by making it possible to build quality education and education in public schools in our country, but for this to happen, there must be participation by all, both the management team and the school and local community in the school’s educational decision-making processes, and this will only be possible through democratic and participatory school management that ensures the participation of all social actors involved in the educational process.

This participation currently takes place in public schools, through School Councils, Class Councils, Parents and Teachers Associations, Student Union and there are also National, State and Municipal Councils of Education in which they are typified in the LDB.

These bodies constitute a space in which there is a collective and collective participation in the processes of standardization of the educational process and deliberate on decisions that can positively or negatively impact the educational systems of education, a space in which everyone in a different way. organized and collegiate can participate, give opinions, deliberate, build proposals and decide on what needs to be done legally in order to have a quality education and teaching.

The Brazilian National Education Guidelines and Bases Law (LDB, Law 9.394 / 96, already establishes and determines regarding democratic management and the participation of all those involved in the educational process in articles 3 and 14:

Art. 3 Education will be taught based on the following principles: (…) VII – democratic management of public education, in the form of this Law and the legislation of education systems; (…). Art. 14 °. The education systems will define the norms for the democratic management of public education in basic education, according to their peculiarities and according to the following principles: I – participation of education professionals in the elaboration of the school’s pedagogical project; II – participation of the school and local communities in school councils and the like. (CARNEIRO, 2012, p. 49, 171)

This means that the greater the participation and involvement of education professionals and the entire school community in the decision-making process, the better it will be for education and the greater its productivity and, consequently, it will contribute to the construction of a more just society. , dignified and egalitarian for all.

In this way, we can say that participation provides significant changes in people’s lives, insofar as they become interested and feel responsible for everything that represents the common interest. Actively participating in the choice process and school decisions makes those involved more responsible and learn to develop the notion of collectivity and promote changes that will enable the improvement not only of the educational process of schools, but of the community in general.

School management, from a democratic perspective, has its own characteristics and requirements. To carry it out, we must observe procedures that promote people’s involvement, commitment and participation. For this, it is necessary to promote activities and perform functions that promote the presence and strengthening of people’s activities within schools. However, the democratic mode of management involves the exercise of power, including planning processes, decision-making and evaluation of the results achieved, etc. It is, therefore, about strengthening procedures for the participation of the school and local communities in the school governance, decentralizing decision-making processes and sharing responsibilities. (DOURADO, 2011, p. 15)

In a democratic management it is understood that for it to happen it is necessary that there is the collective participation of all those involved in the educational process, it is also necessary that it has trained and committed managers with the teaching and learning process, that has the capacity to plan and delegate functions and tasks, who knows and understands planning so that he can make all those involved participate actively and with and this also helps to favor the development of a culture in which the whole community recognizes and understands the importance of the institutions’ heritage educational ie the school.

In this context, it can be said that participatory democratic management at school requires community participation in the actions developed at school. We know that it is not always an easy task, it is up to the manager and the management team to think and develop strategies to motivate people to get involved and participate in the life of the school. something that many do not have, so it is necessary that there is good planning on the part of the management team so that it can thereby ensure the presence and participation of all those involved in this process. And it is about planning that will be dealt with in the next topic, its importance so that the participation of all social actors that are part of the democratic and participatory school management process in public schools in our country is ensured.


Planning is part of the management activities of all school units. We can affirm that it is an intrinsic part of the pedagogical activity, but it is necessary the real participation of all social actors and for that to happen, the manager has a fundamental role for this participation to happen in fact.

In order to have a good participation of the entire school community within a democratic management, it is necessary that the management team knows how to plan their actions well, considering that the act of planning must be a constant activity in the educational context and that a manager to build a democratic administration must have a collective and participative planning because a democratic school presupposes a form of management that is also democratic, where it will have to be concerned with the participation of all members of the school community (students, parents, teachers, coordinators, managers …) one democratic manager should encourage integration within the school so that there is unity between employees and students. It must also establish a link of harmony, participation and partnership with the local community, it must have the capacity and competence to lead the team and the school community of which it manages and also encourage people to also have the ability to lead.

Leadership is the ability to influence, motivate, integrate and organize people and groups to work towards the achievement of goals. In a participatory management, it is not enough that there are certain people in the team who only manage to achieve the goals, objectives, resources and means already foreseen. It is necessary for the team to be able to share intentions and values, practices, so that the interests of the group are channeled towards these goals, and that several people can take the lead and develop these qualities (LIBÂNEO, 2008, p. 89)

It is known that it is not an easy task to develop this type of leadership, but it is possible to get members of the school community to participate in the relevant context of a school. As long as there is a plan to make them aware, using not only the formal communications as it has happened in some teaching units, but also through informal dialogues, showing the people who are involved in this process the importance of their participation. Because it is believed that parents’ awareness and their participation and interaction with matters related to their child’s education is of great value for a child’s intellectual growth, we can say that dialogue is one of the most correct ways to form a citizen democratic and reflective to survive in this unequal world full of prejudice and individualism.

For democratic planning to take place in schools, decisions must be made by mutual agreement between the different members of the school community, always taking care to respect the heterogeneity and individuality of each one. The current school is faced with a diversified reality with new educational challenges, so more appropriate conditions must be established to meet the cultural and economic diversity of each of the local community.

In order to transform this traditional society based on exclusion, where most of the time only managers (politicians), or a small layer of society mainly (middle class) have the power to speak, democracy as a whole must be worked on, leading it the whole community and starting at school through the participation and interaction of all, starting from the children to the highest degree of participation.

In public schools, in order to achieve quality education, the manager, together with the other employees and the school community, must understand and respect the cultural diversity that exists in Brazil. But for this to happen, the entire educational structure must be renewed, leaving behind the authoritarian form of traditional teaching, where the director was the one who dictated the rules, not only for students but for the whole U. E.

School meetings aim to make decisions on pedagogical, administrative, financial and cultural issues. A well-planned and organized meeting is a fundamental step in the democratic development of a school. A democratic institution is built with a bond of trust between the members, as the projects to be developed must have the participation of all, being fundamental for the accomplishment of the work. In the school institution, integration is the main goal for the student’s development.

In order to adopt democratic measures in a school, the Class Council must be made not only by the teachers, but also by the students, where teachers, student (classroom leader), manager and coordinators hold meetings every two months to solve problems involving the use of of the students. The Class Council and the Student Guilds are one of several mechanisms that enable democratic participative Management in the School Institution and the manager should act only as a mediator, respecting individual opinions, reaching a consensus with the majority, as long as that majority is according to educational norms, only through collectivism will the necessary results be achieved for the development and approval of educational projects in which the school needs in order to provide and offer quality education. It is through school meetings that the most diverse articulations made by the school community are made possible, and information, decisions and projects are taken through discussions made by those responsible for improving education, which are parents, teachers, managers, in short, the entire community. school that together made more appropriate decisions for the good planning and learning in the school performance of the students.

To be a successful school manager, one of the most relevant points is to be a qualified manager with courses suitable for the position and experience, to be charismatic, open to dialogue, disciplined and disciplined, respected, participative and always ready to take appropriate initiatives in the right time at the right time without privileging A or B. The educational manager must not be manipulated by local political manifestations. The participation of the public power is essential for the construction of a truly democratic management. But what is known is that politicians still interfere in educational decisions mainly in public schools in the interior of Brazil. The public school depends on an autonomy to better develop its pedagogical projects, and put aside political unrest so that our students and the local community can feel true free and transparent citizens without the slightest fear of being critical and being able to express their feelings. opinions.


Building democratic and participative management in Brazilian public schools is the wish of everyone who is part of education and strives for everyone to participate and have access to quality education and teaching, this is not an easy task, but it is possible as long as there are public policies that encourage the participation of all those involved in the educational process and considering everything that was discussed and analyzed in a perspective of democratic and participative management, we realize that developing this type of management is a longing for all education professionals and especially for education. school management team because it facilitates the decision-making process and helps the community to understand their true role not only within the educational context, but in society as a whole.

And to implement and make the constitutional principle of democratic management of public education in public schools in Brazil a reality in each school, it is also necessary that there are managers capable of applying legal rules in more different situations. To do so, they must have a more comprehensive knowledge of the Law of Directives and Basis for National Education (LDB), of the National, State and Municipal Plans, have an academic training in the school management area, who knows how to lead and has didactic and pedagogical autonomy to manage teaching and school education in order to guarantee all students a quality education and teaching and thereby contributing to the formation of critical and reflective citizens capable of acting and being part of the society in which they are inserted. We understand that this is part of a process and that it is happening little by little and that we have everything to be able to develop this management so dreamed and idealized by everyone, which is democratic and participative school management.


CARNEIRO, Moaci Alves. LDB fácil: leitura crítico-compreensiva, artigo a artigo; 20. Edição; Petrópolis RJ: Vozes, 2012. 581 p.

DOURADO, Progestão Módulo II: Como promover, articular e envolver a ação das pessoas no processo de gestão escolar. Brasília: CONSED, 2001 126 p.

LIBÂNEO, José Carlos. Organização e gestão da escola: teoria e prática. 5. ed. rev. ampl. Goiânia: Livros MF, 2008.

LÜCK, Heloisa.  A gestão participativa na escola. Petrópolis, RJ: 9 ed. Vozes, 2011 125 p.

[1] Master’s student in Educational Sciences from Zoe University, Post-graduate in School Management from the Federal University of Tocantins (UFT), graduated in Pedagogy from the State University of Tocantins (UNITINS), graduated in Normal Superior from the State University of Tocantins (UNITINS).

Submitted: September, 2020.

Approved: September, 2020.

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