IMPACT OF STAFF DEVELOPMENT PROGRAMMES ON THE PERFORMANCE OF TEACHERS IN SECONDARY SCHOOLS IN YOLA METROPOLIS, ADAMAWA STATE
1.1 Background to the Study
Every organisation is expected to be committed in creating an equitable and motivating working environment to empower members. Staff development is seen by Support Council Education Service (2004) as one of the main roots of achieving this commitment. Staff development programmes is, therefore, a process designed to improve job understanding, promote more effective job performance, and establish future goals for career growth. It helps staff in understanding their responsibilities. It is the opportunities available to new and experienced teachers and teaching assistants (paraprofessionals). These activities are designed to improve the quality of classroom instruction and enable individual to grow professionally.
Every society requires adequate human and material resources to improve its social organisation, preserve the culture, enhance economic development and reform the political structures. Education is often seen as a prerequisite for quality manpower development and creation of wealth, a sure path to success in life and service to humanity. Thus, teachers have important role to play to adequately prepare the young for their roles in the society in order to achieve the set national objectives. Teachers‟ influence is always felt in every aspect of the society. All other professionals and workers within the society have at one time or the other passed through the tutelage of a teacher and thus whatever they now become is a direct outcome of what teachers have passed on to them (Okemakinde, Adewuyi &Alabi 2013).
Syeda, Nighat & Syeda (2012), Education is extremely important not only for the success of an individual but for the nation as well. Education is defined as to develop knowledge, skills and character of the students. Its major objective is to make an individual learn about how to level with the society by developing intellect, equipping one‟s self to deal with the reality of life and by facilitating realization of self-potential and latent talents of an individual. Education encompasses teaching and learning specific skills, positive judgement, well developed wisdom and profoundness (Syeda, Nighat & Syeda 2012). A successful teacher is required to be equipped with the characteristics like mastery of subject matter, professional training, sound physical and mental health, devotion and dedication to his profession (Syeda, Nighat & Syeda 2012). The teacher of today is an individual who is not only interested in children‟s acquired knowledge and skills but also equally involved in his total development.
Considering the crucial role of teacher in the academic achievement and overall development of his pupils, it is imperative that a teacher should possess qualities like command on the subject, moral and mental fitness, devotion to the profession and appropriate skill to perform his duties for the achievement of the coveted objectives. A teacher has to play many roles in an educational set up. He is supposed to work simultaneously as “authority figure, leader, knower, director, manager counsellor and guide”, whereas at the same time he is supposed to play such roles as friend, confidante, and parent as well. In this regard, a teacher is not a mere provider of knowledge and lessons in the classroom but moreover he is a person involved and interested in the wholesome development of students; he is accordingly supposed to have some qualities and characteristics like proficiency in the subject, moral health, physical and mental fitness.
Effective performance on the part of staffs is essential for the success of the organisation. Such performance, to a large extent, will depend on their knowledge skills, and confidence in originating ideas as to how best to carry out the task of the job. Hence,
the need of staff development programmes which should aim at improving the effectiveness of individuals at work and for the greater responsibilities. Teachers constitute an important factor in the implementation of the curriculum. The quality of teachers is known to be a key predictor of student‟s performance. Teaching as a profession demand continuous development of knowledge and ability through training programmes such training programmes includes in-service, conference, workshop, seminars and mentoring staffs.
Generally speaking, staff development through in-service, conference, workshop, seminars and mentoring offer one of the most promising ways of improving classroom instruction. It is an attempt to assist the classroom teachers to improve on their teaching strategies, techniques, handle new instructional materials or possessed the necessary information and skills that are required for effective lesson delivery. In essence the dream of self-reliance, skill acquisition and entrepreneurship through education can only be realized through a well-defined programme. In most cases, staff development programmes are organized by an institution, a corporate body, Association or Government agency and is normally lasted for a short period of time.
An activity similar to that but which may take a long time period is what is referred to as in-service training programmes. In this case workers who are already in the service go on training or courses programme in order to update or acquire the intellectual and professional skills that are necessary to discharge their duties more efficiently (Newberry, 1979). As such, the need for in-service training for teachers plays an essential role in successful education reform. It also serve as a bridge between prospective and experienced educators to meet the new challenges of guiding students towards higher standards of learning and self-development
Conference also enhances teachers‟ growth and development. It is a formal meeting of people with a shared interest, typically one that takes place over several days mostly held at school level and at cluster level with the purpose of reviewing and reflecting on practice on a regular basis. Conference comprise different personalities in the field of education with bountiful of ideas. Robinson (1996) discussing the form and use of conferences, which the researcher adopted as one of the elements under training recognized it strength for conveying a message to a large audience, while seeking opportunity to hear and comment on view of recognized authorities. Teachers have assess to a broad range of ideas through conference which lead to the enhanced performance.
Frequency in attending workshops is also an indicator of staff development. Workshop can be seen as a group of people engaged in study or work on a creative project or subject. It is meant to upgrade teacher‟s knowledge and sharing of ideas. Workshop can be organized in school cluster and qualified teachers or university lecturers are invited to these clusters to serve as trainers and mentors. Such formal arrangement for staff development need to be supported by informal practices like team teaching and sharing of experiences and educational resources among teachers, which greatly contribute to self-improvement. This approach has the advantage of stimulating healthy debates about various reform measures and innovations and encouraging collaboration, peer coaching, inquiry, collegial study groups, reflective discussion and action.
The knowledge, idea, skills and attitude at the educator must be developed through integrated and systematic way. One of the important component to improve the quality of education is through seminar for teachers. Seminar is a group meeting led by
an expert that focuses on a specific topic or discipline. Seminars typically take place over the course of a few days and involve cooperative discussion, multiple speakers and opportunities to share perspectives and issues related to the topic. Attending a seminar has numerous benefits, including improving communication skills, gaining experts knowledge, networking with others and renewing motivation and confidence.
Novice teachers are faced with challenges that are changing to complex. Quality mentoring is a key factor in why novice teachers stay in the profession (teacher retention) and develop expertise. Mentoring is an effective method of helping inexperienced teachers to develop progress in their profession. It is a personal developmental relationship in which a more experienced person helps to guide a less experienced person (protégé). Mentoring is a process for the informal transmission of knowledge perceived by the recipient as relevant to work, career or professional development and entails informal communication, usually face-to-face. Therefore, teacher quality is improved by the implementation of best teaching practice. Mentoring plays a significant role in the implementation of best practice by asking reflective questions, modelling effective instruction and providing curriculum resources.
Staff development has been accepted as an effective method of increasing the knowledge of skills of teachers in order to enable teachers to teach more effectively. It is the important aspect of education process that deals with the art of acquiring skills in the teaching profession. They are essential practice that enhance subject mastery, teaching methodology and classroom management. The primary aims of staff development, as submitted by Health (1989), include enhancing professional competence which will also have some impact on personal growth and awareness, increasing job satisfaction and developing potentials for future work, and improving the individuals and institutions abilities to achieve their aims and objectives. The skills and competencies acquire because of prudent staff development programmes will enable the teachers to perform optimally if not maximally. Their performance will not enable them give efficient and proficient service but will provide the avenues for technological advancement as well as enabling the attainment of varied policies toward reaching our national most expected destination compassionately.
Staff development is a function of the interaction between and among five key players or stakeholders. These are the ministry of education responsible for teacher education, universities, schools, the community and the teachers themselves. The ministry of education is responsible for providing policy and financial support for teacher professional development. Universities and teacher education collages are responsible for providing training, conducting policy oriented research and providing relevant literature and materials to support teachers in school. School management on its part is supposed to provide support to the teachers on a daily basis through advice, supervision, monitoring and evaluation at the teaching and learning activities. The community through the school committee is responsible for supporting teacher professional development by providing the necessary resources in the budget. The teacher is responsible for being proactive in seeking opportunities for his or her own professional development.
The aim of staff development programmes is to keep the staff up-to-date on the latest development in the field, or ensure the promotion of professional growth, help to improve pedagogical skills, keep teachers abreast with new knowledge, meet particular needs, such as curriculum development and orientation, help in leadership responsibility, help to improve mutual respect among teachers and recognize the need of modernteaching methods. It is the most effective available to middle level and top executives in the country. It is gratifying to note that the federal and state governments of Nigeria are aware of immense benefits derivable from staff development programmes.
In Nigeria for instance, there are such institutions as:
1. The Centre for Management Development (CMD)
2. The Nigerian Institute of Management (NIM)
3. National Institute for Strategic and Policy Studies, Kuru, Jos (NISPS)
4. Administrative Staff Collage of Nigeria (ASCON)
Hence, any staff development programme should be able to motivate, and improve the role perception of staff and also develop a proper attitude in them toward the public. It is clear that the need for adequate staff development programmes for teachers in Nigeria has become obvious in the last two decades. When teachers are educated, their standard of living is likely to improve, since they are empowered to access productive ventures, which will ultimately lead to an improvement in their livelihoods. The role of education therefore, is not just to impart knowledge and skills that enable the beneficiaries to function as economy and social change agent in the society, but also to impart values, attitudes and aspirations important for national development.
The straight forward linkage between education and staff development programmes is therefore the improvement of labour skills, which in turn increases opportunities for well paid productive job. This then might enable the citizens of any nation to fully exploit their potentials positively. On staff personnel management in schools, Udofia & Ikpe (2012) noted that the Nigerian teacher is bashed by the very society the teacher labours to build. Most government pronouncements concerning the welfare of teachers had been that of bogus promises. Teachers have suffered a lot in terms of their welfare and have also been abused by the authorities directly concerned
with their welfare. Most teachers in the school system are not happy with their lot and as the result most of them are negatively disposed with their jobs. The existing staff personnel management practices appears to indicate that majority of teachers are dissatisfied with their jobs and this make them with draw physically from teaching or remain there to constitute serious danger to school effectiveness since they could use such adjustment mechanism as displacement, absenteeism, truancy or apathy in their attitude to work.
Many studies such as those of Ajayi (1991) & Arikewuyo (2006) have shown that secondary school teachers in Nigeria are not only dissatisfied with their teaching profession but also have poor job that has no prestige and which does not enjoy any recognition from public. One of the greatest threats to secondary education in Nigeria is teacher‟s lack of job satisfaction. Tension in Nigerian educational system is consequent in part upon teacher‟s dissatisfaction with their job. Nwadiana (2008) captures the working environment of Nigerian teachers in the following words:
Over the years, teachers have been dejected and appear to be rejected. The salaries are poor and not paid regularly. This stated affair has led to intermittent industrial actions by teachers. Teachers live from hand to mouth. Other section of the public tease them that their reward is in heaven. Teachers in Nigeria are sentenced to a perpetual life at decent poverty (p.9).
The 2008 nation-wide teachers‟ strike reported in the 36 states of the Federation
including Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Abuja. It does over a number of grievances,
including non-provision of in-service training programmes for teachers, poor salary
structure and allowances, lack of functional welfare scheme including staff pensions,
poor condition of service, lack of teaching and learning resources, lack of conducive
environment for teaching and inadequate incentives (News Watch News Magazine, 2008). Staff development programme has a significant impact on the success of educational reforms and on students‟ learning. The more opportunit ies the teachers have to be both subjects and objects of educational reform, the more effective the reform and the teachers‟ work is. Therefore, staff development programmes must be systematically planned, supported, funded and researched to guarantee the effectiveness of this process.
Thus, this study becomes important to address key issues such as staff development programmes in Nigeria context, to know how effective it is, how it has been affecting the service delivery of teachers and the positive impact this can have on the academic performance of secondary school teachers in Yola Metropolis.
1.2 Statement of the Problem
The impact of staff development programmes on the performance of teachers is worth investigating when one looks at the over view in the background to the study. The calibre of many teachers working in the public secondary schools in Yola metropolis is nothing to write home about. They are usually inefficient in the performance of their duties. Administrators of education in the state rarely organize in-service training, conferences, workshops, seminars and mentoring for secondary school teachers to improve themselves in spite of their critical role in bringing about teachers‟ effectiveness and this has grossly affected the quality and quantity of teachers. Thus, if staff development programmes fails and did not succeed, Nigeria may experience set back in her social and economic development.
Many schools that organise staff training programmes in the country do have a wrong nomenclature that staff development programmes require placing few people with high potentials in a training programme while ignoring the rest of staff. It is of course difficult to identify the potential of prospective teachers, but to rely on a few trainees is also risky. It is even much riskier when the trainees are selected on the basis of friendship or kinship with executives without regards for capabilities. Apart from this, the academic performance of secondary school students has also being disappointing. More than half of the candidate who sat for the May/June 2015 West African Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE) cannot advance to higher institution. Hence, it has been discovered that lack of efficient and skilful teachers, corruption etc has been the reason behind this sordid performance.
Teachers are faced with challenges in implementing staff development programmes which amongst others includes failure to involve teachers in the planning of professional development activities demoralises and develops in them negative attitudes. Teachers appreciate programmes where they take part in organizing rather than being left in the dark on matters that concern them. Another challenge is financial constraints, Dadey & Harber (1991) observe that due to “financial constraint which exist in almost every country in Africa, some teachers have access to training once in a decade and some rarely, if ever” (p:34). Fullan (1991) also observe that “financial and political factors inhibit the expansion of induction programmes” (p:305). This evidence shows that financial constraints are contributory to limited professional practices undertaken to upgrade teachers. Limited funds inhibits teachers‟ maturity. Underfunding of staff development programmes can be one of the factors that acts as a barrier to effective teacher‟s growth. Therefore, teachers are the main determinates of quality education. If they are apathetic, uncommitted, uninspired, lazy, unmotivated, the whole nation is doomed. If they are ignorant in their discipline and impart wrong knowledge, they become not only redundant, but dangerous.
This study is, however, imperative to determine the impact of staff development programmes on the performance of teachers in secondary schools and how this could affect the academic performance of students in secondary schools in Nigeria.
1.3 Objectives of the Study
The study is set to achieve the following objectives:
1. determine the impact of in-service training on the performance of teachers in secondary schools in Yola Metropolis;
2. examine the impact of conference on the performance of teachers in secondary schools in Yola Metropolis;
3. assess the impact of workshop on the performance of teachers in secondary schools in Yola Metropolis;
4. ascertain the impact of seminar on the performance of teachers in secondary schools in Yola Metropolis; and
5. find out the impact of mentoring on the performance of teachers in secondary schools in Yola Metropolis.
1.4 Research Questions
1. What is the impact of In-service training on the performance of teachers in secondary schools in Yola Metropolis?
2. What is the impact of Conference on the performance of teachers in secondary schools in Yola Metropolis?
3. What is the impact of Workshop on the performance of teachers in secondary schools in Yola Metropolis?
4. What is the impact of Seminar on the performance of teachers in secondary schools in Yola Metropolis?
5. What is the impact of Mentoring on the performance of teachers in secondary schools in Yola Metropolis?
1.5 Hypotheses of the Study
The study formulated the following hypotheses:
H01. There is no significant difference in the opinions of principals, teachers and MOE officials on the impact of In-service training programmes on the teachers‟ performance in secondary schools in Yola Metropolis.
H02. There is no significant difference in the opinions of principals, teachers and MOE officials on the impact of Conference on the teachers‟ performance in secondary schools in Yola Metropolis.
H03. There is no significant difference in the opinions of principals, teachers and MOE officials on the impact of Workshop on the teachers‟ performance in secondary schools in Yola Metropolis.
H04. There is no significant difference in the opinions of principals, teachers and MOE officials on the impact of Seminar on the teachers‟ performance in secondary schools in Yola Metropolis.
H05. There is no significant difference in the opinions of principals, teachers and MOE officials on the impact of Mentoring on the teachers‟ performance in secondary schools in Yola Metropolis..