1.1 BACKGROUND TO THE STUDY
In recent time, Job satisfaction has been a crucial problem for all organizations no matter whether in public or private organizations or working in developed or developing countries. One of the purposes for this degree of interest is that satisfied personnel are reported as committed workers and commitment is an indication of organizational output and effectual operations (Robbins & Coulter, 2005:370).
More so, considering education as the most valuable tool for human building and development of any nation, the relevance of job satisfaction therefore is very crucial to the long-term growth of any educational system around the world. In recognition of this, FRN (2004) make it clear that government recognizes education as the greatest investment that the nation can make to bring about civilization, modernization, development and socioeconomic progress. Thus, one of the most crucial factors in the attainment of this goal is the role of teachers. It is widely acknowledged that the most valuable asset of a country is its teachers. They build fortune of the nation. Teachers are said to be the builders of the nation. According to Fredriksson (2004), teachers hold the responsibilities to lift up the school effectiveness because they have actual power to make a difference in students’ human capital development during teaching and learning process. Hence, teachers’ commitment is a critical aspect in determining the success of education reform and school effectiveness.
It should be noted however, that teachers today are buffeted by many challenges all of which jointly operate to dampen their morale and lower their motivation to perform affectively on their jobs.
According to McLaughlin et.al (2003) many of the well-publicized shortcomings of the elementary and secondary education system in the United States are, to an important extent, due to inadequacies in the working conditions, resources, and support afforded to school teachers. Proponents of this view hold, for example, that teachers are underpaid, have too little say in the operation of schools, are afforded too few opportunities to improve their teaching skills, suffer from a lack of support or assistance, and are not adequately rewarded or recognized for their efforts. The key to improving the quality of schools, these critics claim, lies in upgrading the status, training, and working conditions of teachers in furthering quality of teaching profession.
As elsewhere, many factors affect teachers’ motivation and job satisfaction levels in Nigeria. Adelabu (2005) classifies these factors into three main categories, namely job context, job content, and reward system. In the aspect of Job context, Adelabu noted that public schools in Nigeria are a collection of dilapidated buildings, many without toilets and other basic facilities. The schools are staffed by tired and frustrated teachers and attended by poorly fed, disenchanted pupils. This environment does not engender high job morale. On Job content however, he observed that teachers’ particularly in elementary schools, are seriously overworked. A typical government teacher is required to teach between seven to eight periods each day to classes, which frequently have more than forty pupils. Teachers are also expected to assist with other school-based activities that are sometimes labour-intensive. He equally stressed that the reward system in terms of pay packets of teachers does not appear to have job motivation as its goal.