FACTORS INFLUENCING TEACHERS’ EFFECTIVENESS IN EDO STATE PUBLIC SECONDARY SCHOOLS
Background to the Study
Teachers’ role in any educational system cannot be over-emphasized. Teachers are the executors and implementers of the educational policies and curriculum. Hence whether there are loopholes in the educational processes and outcome, teachers tend to receive more blame for these shortcomings than any other agent connected with educational activities.
Adesina (1987) recognized teachers as the heart of Nigeria’s educational system at all levels. The teachers continue to be the major determinants of quality of education, be it at primary, secondary or tertiary level. The revised National Policy on Education (1998) confirms that, “No educational system can rise above the quality of its teachers”.
Similarly, the National Curriculum Association conference held in 1969 described the teacher as the “Keyman in the entire educational programme”. The implication of the foregoing for educational policy makers in particular and the society at large is that, adequate attention should be paid to teachers’ welfare in all its ramifications. This should be the case as point out by Edem (1987): The curriculum however well developed and however properly interpreted, will come for short of our hopes unless it is applied by teachers who are themselves the product of its philosophy.
In a situation where teachers are left to their fate to face the rigours of academic and in some cases administration work, there is the high tendency that they would decline both in efficiency and effectiveness. Worst still, inspite of these rigours they are being poorly motivated in terms of salary remunerations. According to Borton (1981) “Education is not just for personal survival or to increase one’s income or power over others, but it is for enriching one’s life for personal growth beyond survival and income”. While agreeing with his view, the question is will it also be justifiable for teachers to use their meager income for the provision of school facilities, materials and equipment needed for effective school work to progress? If the answer to this question is positive, according to Byme (1981) there is a danger that the teacher will lose his initial keenness in teaching for something better.
Moreover, the nature of teachers earns them the regards as experts who know more than their students. This may involve answering questions, correcting or validating the students’ work or what they have said. For the teacher to remain as an expert, there must be a continuous in-service training programme for him and the urge to expand his breadth of understanding. In a situation where there is little or no in-service training programmes and other opportunities for the teachers to widen their knowledge, it is obvious that they will become incompetent. This is further buttressed by Wilbert (1978) when he said that the teacher’s ability to remain well informed on new developments in his ability to make creative and critical judgments concerning the main trends in his field bear directly upon his competence as an expert. In other words, if teachers are behind time and obsolete in their disciplines, their effectiveness becomes questionable. Teachers’ performance can be said to be the ability of the teacher to effectively and efficiently carry out the following duties:
· Adequate preparations for lesson
· Teach the number of periods allocated on the timetable, regularly and punctually;
· Keep the teaching records;
· Sees to the cleanliness of the classrooms and its environment;
· Maintains discipline among his students in and outside the class.
· Check and mark notes given to the students regularly.
· Sets, marks, records, class assignments, tests and examination scripts promptly.
· Properly invigilate both internal and external examinations.
· Attends staff, P.T.A. and other meetings regularly, punctually and partakes actively in them.
· Marks the attendance register daily and takes note of the absentees.
· Sees to the welfare of every student in the class.
· Prepares the continuous assessment booklet and the class master’ sheet.
· Carries out other assignments given to him by the school authority.
High teacher-student ratio, inadequate facilities, equipment and materials could affect teachers’ effectiveness, and also could reduce the performance level expected of an average learner. Thus, the students will directly feel the inconveniences experienced by the teachers. In a situation of unconducive school climate, teachers may find it difficult to function effectively. The school climate entails the sum total of the values and attitudes held by those in the school. These include the interpersonal relationships existing between the principal and teachers, between the teachers – students and other people within the environment as well as everything the school reflects. According to Ajetunmobi (2001) “there is a direct relationship between the environment and the intellectual development of the child inspite of the hereditary germ plasma”. For instance, in a situation where there is a good school environment physical and materially, a child will perform well. On the other hand, a school whose tone is poor and prevent experiential learning by the child, whose physical plants are inadequate and some times very old and not in good condition, whose leadership is uninspiring, whose curriculum is too unwieldy, too narrow or shallow to provide efficiency of use and where pedagogical considerations are non-existent may produce a child with low academic achievement. Furthermore, the truancy of many students nowadays, may influence teachers’ effectiveness. Many students taking advantage of the fact that most schools are overpopulated and that absentees are seldom noticed, disappear from school during the mid-day. Yet, others who were intentionally absent come-up with varying excuses the next day. In addition, some students deliberately miss continuous assessment test, leave their homework undone or refused to attend lesson, even when present in school, but prefer moving from one class to another or stay in some corners in the school.
Teachers’ experience is another teacher quality variable that may also influence student-learning and is indirectly related to issues of certification. A teacher with long years in teaching would draw home his point with various examples drawn from his wealth of experience and this makes the students to understand him better. In other words, a teacher could be motivated through his experience to achieve a high level of teaching competence. He is able to achieve the educational goal by using appropriate teaching method and contexts.
Statement of the Problem
There have been series of comments about the falling standard of education in Nigeria. From all indications every commentator on the issue points accusing fingers at the teachers. With a view to providing quality education in Edo State and Nigeria in general, this research work will examine some factors which could influence teachers’ effectiveness in our society with a view to proffer solutions to effective teaching in Edo State.
To solve the problem of teachers’ ineffectiveness, the following questions are going to be answered:
1. What are the factors influencing teachers’ effectiveness in public schools in Edo State?
2. Do the factors influencing teachers’ effectiveness vary by gender?
3. Do the factors influencing teachers’ effectiveness vary by age of principal?
Ho1: There is no significant difference between factors influencing male teachers and female teachers’ effectiveness in public schools.
Ho2: There is no significant difference in factors influencing teachers’ effectiveness in large and small schools.
Ho3: There is no significant difference in the factors influencing teachers’ effectiveness in age of the principal.
Purpose of the Study
The purpose of this study is to examine the various factors influencing teachers’ effectiveness such as gender, school size, age and to offer suitable suggestions for the enhancement of effective teaching performance.
Significance of Study
Educational policy makers like the Edo State Ministry of Education, Teaching Service Board (TSB), Post Primary Education Board (PPEB) of Edo State, School Administrators, Teachers, Parents, Philanthropic Organization and the students as well, will benefit from the findings of this study. This is because the various problems that prevent teachers from performing their duties effectively will be exposed. Moreover, appropriate recommendations will consequently lead to positive results in terms of the output of our schools with regards to quality of students produced. Thus, the standard of education will be improved. This will create an egalitarian society, economic growth and national development, which is the objective of the National Policy on Education.
Limitation of Study
This study is limited to a survey carried out in the eighteen (18) Local Government Areas of Edo State government owned public secondary schools.
Definition of Terms
Factors: These are things that help to produce results, which could be positive or negative.
Effectiveness: Capacity to produce desired results with a minimum expenditure of energy, time, money or materials.
Educational Programmes: Entails all teaching-learning process going on within or outside the school supervision.
Motivation: Making teaching appealing and interesting to teachers’ by stimulating the active interest of the teachers.
In-service Training: Training going on or continuing while still in service.
Teacher-Student Ratio: This implies the total number of students in class to a teacher.
Teaching Experience: Is the knowledge, skill acquired or gained over the years as a result of teaching.
Professional Qualification: Special education and training required to be possessed or acquired by a person to work in a given job situation.
School Environment: Is the overall structure and surrounding where teaching and learning programmes operates within or outside educational system or institutions.
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