An investigation of factors that contribute to job satisfaction and dissatisfaction among the primary school teachers
Ngalyuka, Jackson Mutiso
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The Problem The problem of this study was to investigate the factors that were identified by the rural primary school teachers as contributing to their satisfaction and dissatisfaction in the teaching profession. Secondly, this study attempted to identify the current needs of the rural primary school teachers in their working environment. The Methodology A teachers' questionnaire was constructed by the researcher to collect data for this study. This was responded to, by 215 teachers who were drawn from 23 randomly sampled primary schools in Kilome division in Machokos district. The questionnaire had two sections. In section one, there were 8 items, which sought information pertaining to the personal characteristic of the respondents. In the second section of the questionnaire there were 30 structured items, which were to measure the attitude of the teachers towards some aspects of the teaching job. The respondents indicated their degree of agreement or disagreement with the items. Two additional open-ended items were included. In the first item, the respondents named any two aspects of the teaching job, which made them, feel very much satisfied with the teaching job. In the second item the respondents mentioned any two aspects of their job, which made them, feel very much dissatisfied with the teaching job. The Design The design of the study was descriptive statistics. Frequencies, percentages and rank order were the kind of statistics utilized for the purpose of describing the data collected. Scope and Limitations It was not possible to investigate the phenomena of job satisfaction and dissatisfaction in all the rural primary schools. The study was only confined to a few schools in two educational zones Kilungu and Kithembe in Machakos district. Since this study was conducted in the rural area where means of communication are poor, it was not possible to visit all the schools. Furthermore, the time set aside for this study could not enable the researcher to visit all the schools in the rural areas. Financial constraints became a limitation in covering a wider area of the study. The researcher assumed that the respondents of this study were reasonably honest and expressed true feelings when responding to the questionnaire. Therefore the validity of this study depends upon such an assumption. Findings The findings of this study indicated that there were factors in the teaching job, which contributed to job satisfaction among the rural primary school teachers. Some of these were: (1) Working near home (2) Getting 3 holidays in a year (3) Helping the young children (4) Cooperation of the teachers (5) The good terms and conditions of the teaching service. It was also revealed from the study that there were factors in the teaching job, which contributed to dissatisfaction. Some of these were: (1) Poor salary; (2) Being overworked; (3) Poor supply of school equipment; (4) Unfair means and limited opportunities for promotion; (5) Leave allowance was not paid; (6) Married teachers were never paid house allowance; (7) Lack of recognition for teachers; (8) Teachers had to travel long distance to collect their salary; (9) Unnecessary salary deductions; (10) Poor school buildings. The current needs of the rural primary school teachers were found to be: better salary, promotional opportunities, better facilities to enhance teaching and learning processes in the schools, and improved status of the teachers in the community. When the results were analysed based on the teachers' various personal variables, it was revealed that the teachers' sex, age, professional grades, teaching experience and status of the teachers in the schools, influenced their perception of the factors that contributed to their job satisfaction and dissatisfaction. Implications This study provides educational administrators with information concerning the attitude of the rural primary school teachers towards some of the aspects of the teaching job. It acquaints them with the current needs of the rural primary school teachers. Such information becomes useful to the educational planners in finding ways and means of improving teaching profession. This would make it possible to retain satisfied teachers in the profession. Recommendations Measures should be taken to see that the teachers' salaries are improved and the relevant allowance is paid irrespective of their sex. Additional staff, both teaching and non-teaching is required in the rural primary schools to ease the teachers' responsibilities and improve the efficiency and effectiveness of the teaching profession. Adequate supply of school equipment needs to be observed for the smooth performance of the teachers. Promotional opportunities for teachers ought to be created in order to boost the working morale of the teachers. Lastly, the terms and conditions of the teaching profession ought to be improved in order to enhance the status of the teachers in the community.