In this article I focus on the relationship between principals and school governing bodies in South Africa. Although the school governing body represents many role players, this article will focus mainly on the role and function of parent representatives in the school governing
body. Parents constitute the majority in the governing bodies and therefore have an important role to play in the effective functioning of their children's schools. The uncertainty about the exact functions of the principal and the governing body is the key to the argument. The legislated functions of the governing body do not provide enough clarity on its daily functioning and this sometimes makes it difficult for principals to manage schools effectively.