COUNSELORS' JOB SATISFACTION IN SECONDARY schools
The study's context Counselling is a field distinguished by its diversity and dynamism. It is influenced by a variety of societal political, economic, and social forces. As a result, there has been a tremendous expansion in the field of counselling's vision, mission, and values in terms of health promotion, family dynamics, career assessment, school adjustments, developmental tasks, ethical standards, and research training.
One of the most important responsibilities of a school counselor is to educate and assist students in their overall development. In the twenty-first century, it is difficult to assist students in achieving academic success and becoming more productive members of society. Today's youth, according to Gysbers, Lapan, and Blair (1999), must deal with a rapidly changing work world and labor force, violence in the home, school, and community, divorce, adolescent suicide, substance abuse, and sexual experimentation.
School counselors play an important role in the school system by assisting students in dealing with these critical issues as well as the normal developmental tasks that adolescents face in life. There is no doubt that a worker's level of job satisfaction has a significant impact on his or her search for alternatives. Counsellors expect to receive their salaries and other benefits on time, at the very least to meet their physiological needs.
This may influence their decision to work or not, and thus contribute to the achievement of organizational goals. As a result, non-recognition of counsellors for excellent work done, a lack of opportunities for advancement through promotion, irregular salaries, and a lack of in-service training, among other factors, have a significant impact on counsellors' job satisfaction and commitment to schools/their clients.
The importance of school counselors cannot be overstated. They help students by providing primary interventions such as counseling, large group guidance, consultations, and coordination (American School Counsellor Association (ASCA), 1999). Despite the fact that each is an important component of a comprehensive guidance program, research has shown that more effective programs focus on providing direct services to students in the form of individual or group counseling (Borders & Drury, 1992).
The demand for school counsellors will continue to rise in Nigeria as school enrollments rise, particularly with the implementation of Universal Basic Education. In recognition of this, the Federal Government of Nigeria has spent considerable time planning and implementing a secondary school guidance and counselling program.
The Federal Government of Nigeria states in section 11 (101J) of her National Policy on Education (2004) that career officers and counsellors will be appointed to post-primary institutions due to the apparent ignorance of many young people about career prospects and personality maladjustment among school children.
Because qualified personnel in this category are in short supply, the government should continue to fund training for interested teachers in guidance and counselling. The government believes that guidance and counselling are educational services that can enhance students' personal growth and psychological development in the school system. Counsellors must be interested in and willing to contribute meaningfully to students' personal growth and psychological development in order to provide this critical educational service.
As a result, research into job satisfaction among school counselors is critical to improving productivity among school counselors in a developing country like Nigeria. Members of an organization must be satisfied with their jobs in order to be committed to them in order for them to discharge their duties effectively. The need to cater for school counsellors' working conditions and ensure their job satisfaction in the school system becomes critical if they are to carry out their responsibilities to everyone's admiration.
If they are unable to achieve their goals as counsellors, they may experience feelings of inadequacy and unhappiness, which may lead to stress and job dissatisfaction. Today, one of the most complex issues confronting schools and school counselors is the issue of school violence, as manifested in cultism in schools, an increase in bullying behavior, and emotional abuse of students.
School violence has become so severe that many young people have been killed or permanently injured. As school administrators struggle to find ways to prevent acts of violence in their schools, they are increasingly turning to school counselors for guidance and assistance in developing safety policies (Fryxwell & Smith, 2000). Indeed, school counselors are viewed as change agents and preventionists.
As a result, as they seek new ways to reduce school violence, they may become frustrated as new responsibilities are assigned to them. When counsellors are expected to perform roles and functions for which they do not believe they have the necessary skills, when they serve too many students, or when they are involved in other ancillary duties that detract from their primary responsibilities, job dissatisfaction may result (DeMato, 2001).
This study of job satisfaction among school counselors is being conducted against this backdrop, as counselors have always been agents of change, called upon to assist students in dealing with a plethora of problems and issues that are critical to the mission and vision of educational enterprise.
As a result, frustration and dissatisfaction may arise when counsellors are prevented from implementing new school counseling programs or carrying out their training. Statement of the Issue A variety of factors influence employee job satisfaction in any organization. These include job nature and accomplishment, recognition, responsibility and advancement, status and security. These considerations are also relevant for school counselors.
The level of job satisfaction influences how well a person performs his or her job. spector 1997; Bacharach, Bamberger, and Mitchel, 1990 According to research (Coll & Freeman, 1997; Cucharme & Martin, 2000), job satisfaction influences an individual's emotional and physical well-being. Job dissatisfaction, on the other hand, is linked to stress and burnout (Kesler, 1990; Burke & Greenglass, 1991; and Marttin & Schinke, 1990).
Today, the world desperately needs scientific and technological advancements through education. Nigeria cannot afford to fall behind in the grand scheme of things, where secondary education will be critical. Counsellors in the school system must be satisfied in order to perform their duties. As a result, the implication is that without improving the working conditions of counsellors and making them happy, very few educational goals are likely to be met.
The role of school counselors in the educational process has garnered public attention. Recognizing the importance of this vital service in the educational enterprise, the government has begun to train and retrain school counselors through seminars, conferences, workshops, and in-service courses.
School counselors serve dual purposes by performing ancillary functions such as teaching various subjects in addition to their primary function of counseling students. Counsellors are sometimes assigned as full-time teachers in the classroom, relegating their professional responsibilities to the background.
The implication is that the demands of the office of a school counsellor within the educational structure cause strain and stress, raising the question of whether secondary school counsellors are satisfied with their jobs.
A number of issues plague Nigeria's educational system, all of which have a negative impact on the level of job satisfaction among counselors. These include current stress from working with more difficult students and needs, increased administrative and managerial tasks, time constraints, a lack of funds, increased counsellor-student ratios, and inadequate facilities.
Although research on teacher job satisfaction has been extensive (e.g., Nwagwu, 1981; Arubayi, 1981; Okoro, 1988), little is known about school counselor job satisfaction (e.g. Eddy 1960; Miler & Muthard 1965; Alao, Olaniyi & Kobiowu 1989). To that end, it is necessary to investigate the overall level of job satisfaction among counsellors in secondary schools in Nigeria's Edo and Delta states.
The following research questions were posed in an attempt to address the study problem.
i. How satisfied are secondary school counsellors in Edo and Delta States with their current jobs?
ii. Which of the following dimensions: promotion, job tenure, salary, workers' social support, and supervision has the greatest impact on school counselors' job satisfaction?
iii. Do male and female counsellors have different levels of job satisfaction?
Is there a difference in job satisfaction between old, average, and young counsellors?
v. Do married and single counsellors have different levels of job satisfaction?
vi. Do experienced and inexperienced counsellors have different levels of job satisfaction?
The study's objective
The goal of this study is to look into the current level of job satisfaction among secondary school counselors in Nigeria's Edo and Delta states.
The study will specifically assess the dimensions of job satisfaction, namely promotion, job tenure, salary workers' social support, and supervision, in order to determine which of these factors most significantly contribute to the job satisfaction of school counselors.
This study will also look at some demographic factors that may influence job satisfaction among school counselors. These factors include gender, age, marital status, and number of years of counselling experience.
Furthermore, the study will determine whether there are differences in job satisfaction among secondary school counselors.
To guide the research, the following hypotheses were proposed.
I The dimensions of promotion, job tenure, salary, workers' social support, and supervision do not significantly correlate with job satisfaction among school counselors.
(ii) There is no statistically significant difference in job satisfaction between male and female counsellors.
(iii) There is no statistically significant difference in job satisfaction between old, average, and young counsellors.
(iv) There is no statistically significant difference in job satisfaction between married and single counsellors.
(v)There is no statistically significant difference in job satisfaction between experienced and inexperienced counsellors.
The Study's Scope
The purpose of this study is to determine the current level of job satisfaction among secondary school counsellors in Nigeria's Edo and Delta states. To that end, this study is limited to professional school counsellors in Edo and Delta States' public secondary schools. Promotion, job tenure, salary, workers' social support, and supervision are among the aspects of job satisfaction to be investigated.
Other aspects of job satisfaction, such as achievement, recognition, administrative atmosphere, and organizational practices, were not covered in this study. Furthermore, the study excluded private secondary schools because they differ from public secondary schools in terms of counsellor working conditions and administrative control. This study excludes school counsellors and counsellor educators from tertiary institutions such as universities, polytechnics, and colleges of education.
The Study's Importance
The findings of this study will add to the body of knowledge and increase information in the field of school counselor job satisfaction. As a result, it will be crucial to the educational sector in general and the counselling profession in particular.
It would emphasize to educational planners and administrators the importance of having qualified counsellors who are satisfied with their jobs, because counsellors who are satisfied with their jobs are more likely to exhibit the type of behavior required to promote the personal growth and development of students, which is their primary responsibility.
The study would also aid various levels of government-federal, state, and local-in the areas of secondary school counsellor job satisfaction planning, policy formulation, and program implementation, as a satisfied counsellor is thought to be a productive and dedicated worker.
The study's findings will motivate counselor educators to conduct additional research on job satisfaction among school counselors. This will aid in the development of more empirical studies in the field of professional school counseling.
The study would be extremely beneficial to the post-primary school board, school principals, and counsellors themselves in gaining a better understanding of the variables influencing job satisfaction and evaluating the secondary school counselling program in order to ensure that counsellors are regularly supervised and adequately catered for in the school system.
The following terms are defined in the context in which they are used in this study for clarity:
Job Satisfaction: The degree to which a counsellor is satisfied with the work content and working conditions, including salaries, fringe benefits, and allowances.
Conditions of Service: The conditions established by the Ministry of Education to govern the appointment, promotion, and discipline of counselling staff.
Inexperienced Counsellor: A counsellor with less than ten years of field experience.
Experienced Counsellor: A counsellor who has worked in the field for ten years or more.
Counsellor over the age of 44: A counsellor who is over the age of 44.
A typical counsellor is someone between the ages of 25 and 44.
Young counsellor: A counsellor who is under the age of 25.
A public school is one that is built and owned by the government.
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