«INFLUENCE OF TEACHERS’ PROFESSIONALISM ON TEACHER PERFORMANCE IN BUSIRO COUNTY SECONDARY SCHOOLS, WAKISO DISTRICT BY MARGARET NABUKENYA BA (EDUC.) ...»
In general, literature revealed that the code of conduct is talked about by a good number of researchers though they do it in different contexts and it is valued and respected so much by the teachers because it acts as a guide to all, and that teacher‟s commitment is closely connected to their work performance (Cheng, 1993). As regards perception, various researchers do talk about it but they seem to have different ideas many of which do not bring out a clear picture of how teachers perceive their code of conduct.
2. 3.1 Teachers’ Code of conduct and teacher performance Teaching is governed by the professional code of conduct in the 1962 teachers‟ conditions of service (Nkwanga, 1992). In this regard different authors and researchers on teachers‟ performance maintain that the code of conduct is very vital for enhanced teacher performance in Busiro County secondary schools, Wakiso District. For example, McKee and McArdle (2007) revealed that professionalism goes hand in hand with performance and they state that one of the hallmarks of any profession is the commitment of its members to a code of ethics which sets out professional values and responsibilities. Unfortunately they do not show how actually the code influences actual teachers‟ performance. On the other hand, Ssekamwa (2000) reveals that the code is very important to teachers and teachers who observe their code of conduct through exhibiting a sense of responsibility, respect, decency, integrity, trust, honesty, service, and equality for student learning, have a sense of efficacy, and a critical component of professionalism. Ssekamwa (2000) however does not indicate the use of the code towards teachers‟ actual performance. According to Aiftinca (2004), the code is made up of a totality of core values surrounding the teacher as a human person and as a social being but these are within his confines as society permits. Unfortunately the importance of these core values and their realistic stance on man‟s educational enterprise are in most cases underscored especially in educational fields and particularly in Busiro County secondary schools that are found in Wakiso District.
Boyer (2002) quoting a World Bank policy study on education in Africa notes that most African teacher colleges and schools of education in universities are in a crisis. That is; they are producing too many graduates of dubious quality and relevance, teachers inclusive, and they seem to generate too little new knowledge. His observations are very good but they fall short of revealing the value problem in most liberalized teacher colleges and schools of education thus affecting teachers‟ performance in secondary schools particularly the ones in Busiro County, Wakiso District. Genza (2008) reveals that teachers, by the very nature of their profession are meant to be role models and authority figures to convey moral values by living up to the code of conduct. Unfortunately, he does not show how the teachers‟ code of conduct influences their performance in secondary schools in Wakiso district. Kigongo (1994) laments that there seems to be very little and nothing elaborate on the subject of core values as laid down by the code of conduct in formal education. Kigongo (1994) presents some good work and his findings reveal a lot, and though his focus is on secondary education but he is not focusing on the code of conduct in Busiro County secondary schools in Wakiso District.
Unfortunately, this may not be the case in Busiro County secondary schools of Wakiso District as Opuda-Asibo (2002) noted that teacher colleges and schools of education in universities serve many other purposes which are at times negative, for example, they are multi-national knowledge channels, and at times even ignore the interests of their own societies thus producing teachers that do not conform to the commands of their ethics. These observations seem realistic but fall short of mentioning the value problem created by teacher colleges and schools of education in universities‟ cultures and values other than those of their society. According to Saha‟s (1991) findings, teacher colleges and schools of education in universities in Africa are supposed to play a leading role in almost everything. This scholar‟s findings seem to be good but upon close observation it is evident that they apply what is observed in a few instances and generalize it on all teacher colleges and schools of education in university enterprises elsewhere in the world. These have very good findings for the value problem in education. However they do not delineate the code of conduct as a source of value problem in teacher performance.
Blakemore and Cooksey (1981) have observed that the high professional conduct expected of teachers may especially be irksome to young male teachers. They find it difficult to adjust to these expectations. The two researchers here observe that these young teachers may need an outing often with members of the opposite sex and visit night clubs or watch movies. While their observation and finding is very good and educative, the two researchers do no actually bring out a clear picture of how the code of conduct for teachers influences teachers‟ performance in Busiro County secondary schools in Wakiso district. Nkwanga (1992) set out to establish the effectiveness of teacher education on the professional conduct of primary school teachers. The researcher concluded that the social environment in and around the school, age and personality have a lot of impact on teacher‟s professional conduct as does teacher education. Much as Nkwanga‟s (1992) findings are good, he however does not bring out a clear picture of how exactly the code of conduct for teachers does influence their performance particularly in Busiro County secondary schools, Wakiso district.
Stinnett and Hugget (1956) report that apart from professional codes, social norms and denominational traditions of foundation bodies all have pressure to bear on teachers, therefore if professional ethics are to be inculcated in the pre-service teachers, religion and moral education have to be part of him. As a matter of fact, this is very good, but Stinnett and Hugget (1956) leave out the aspect of how the real code of conduct for teachers do influence their performance. They put much of their emphasis on ensuring that religion and moral education are being taught so that they become part of the teachers‟ life. Further stating, Safari (2003) set out to establish the role of chaplains in the moral formation of students in catholic founded secondary schools and he found out that there is a purpose of moral formation in secondary schools, and it is about the moral upbringing of secondary school students. The chaplain has a role to play in the moral upbringing of secondary school students given his back ground training at the center of which was spiritual and moral formation. Safari (2003)‟s findings are excellent but his focus is mainly on the moral upbringing of secondary school students. He does not look out for the moral upbringing of Busiro County secondary school teachers in Wakiso and later on how their code of conduct influences their performance.
2.3. 2 Teachers’ Commitment and Teacher performance To education researchers, the degree of teacher commitment is one of the most important aspects of the performance and quality of school staff. Commitment is defined here as the degree of positive, affective bond between the teacher and the school. It does not refer to a passive type of loyalty where teachers stay with their jobs, but are not really involved in the school or their work. Rather, it reflects the degree of internal motivation, enthusiasm, and job satisfaction teachers derive from teaching and the degree of efficacy and effectiveness they achieve in their jobs. To this effect, many writers of journal articles on teacher commitment have identified this element of commitment as one of the most critical but important factor for the future success of education and secondary schools in terms of their performance. Cheng (1999) report that teacher commitment is closely connected to teachers‟ work performance and their ability to innovate and to integrate new ideas into their own practice, absenteeism, staff turnover, as well as having an important influence on students‟ achievement in, and attitudes toward school. This researcher‟s observation is good, but he does not indicate how commitment influences the performance of teachers especially in Busiro County secondary schools in Wakiso District.
Kanter (1974) reveals that teachers are thought to have commitments to the social context in which they work, that is the social system. However, the overarching assumption is that teacher commitment is not one dimensional, but has many layers and dimensions. As a matter of fact this could be very correct, but Kanter (1974) as a researcher does not bring out clearly how commitment influences teachers‟ performance particularly in Busiro County secondary schools in Wakiso District. Mutchler (2005) notes that results indicate that factors influencing teachers' professional commitment, center on their culturally and / or ideologically - based dedication to making a difference for students and on their willingness to devote personal time and energy outside their classrooms to take action on that commitment. While Mutchler (2005) reports so, he actually does not indicate the actual influence of commitment on teacher performance in Busiro County secondary schools in Wakiso District. In reporting further on the factors that are most important to teachers' organizational commitment, Mutchler (2005) says that teachers are grounded in the quality of their relationships with fellow teachers and other school employees specifically the extent to which they enjoy mutual support in managing the work of teaching, and experience respectful relationships in the workplace.
However, his study leaves out the influence of commitment on teacher performance in Busiro County secondary schools in Wakiso District.
Joolideh and Yeshodhara, (2009) in their studies revealed that Indian teachers had better organizational commitment in the affective and normative components, and Iranian teachers were found to have better organizational commitment in the continuance component. In both countries age groups and subjects taught by teachers did not have any influence over their organizational commitment. However, Joolideh and Yeshodhara‟s studies do not talk about the situation in an African continent and later on in Busiro County secondary schools in Wakiso District but their studies are in an Asian continent. Namutebi (2006) while carrying out her study on reward management practices and commitment of teachers reported that there are a number of challenges affecting the use of rewards in ensuring the commitment of teachers in the secondary schools in Wakiso district in Uganda. However, Namutebi‟s (2006) study scope is limited to rewards, which is a very small aspect that can boost teacher performance in secondary schools in Wakiso District. She ignores the issue of dedication and identification with the school.
On the other hand, Acom (2007) argues that some factors such as voluntarism, cooperation, and belongingness are significantly different from others in terms of being commitment drivers and this is the case in private secondary school in the greater Kampala. She however does not bear in mind that commitment aspects differ according to individuals especially in Busiro County secondary schools in Wakiso District. In his study on Teachers‟ self-esteem, sex, qualification and commitment to teaching, Ejuu (2005) gave an empirical report that there was no significant difference in self esteem among the male and female teachers, neither was there a statistically significant relationship between self-esteem and teachers‟ academic qualification in secondary schools in Uganda. Hence, while many studies show commitment as an important factor in teacher performance, others (Namutebi, 2006; Mutchler, 2005) do not show any, suggesting that the correlation between these two is far from certain, hence the need for this study to test the correlation between commitment and teacher performance in Busiro County secondary schools in Wakiso district.
Quinn (1997) set out to make an assessment of the effects of teacher professionalization by examining the relationships between a selected set of characteristics, traditionally associated with professions and professionals, and one of the most important aspects of the quality and performance of teachers: their commitment to their teaching careers in United States of America. The analysis shows that there are indeed, school differences in teacher commitment, and there are also significant relationships between school-level characteristics and commitment and that some characteristics of professionalization are related to teacher commitment and some are not. While Quinn (1997)‟s study findings are very important but she leaves out the aspect of how a teachers‟ commitment influences that teachers‟ performance particularly in Busiro County secondary schools, Wakiso district. Riley (1997) investigated on the changes in teacher commitment for each teacher in each school as a function of four of each teacher‟s background demographic characteristics (sex, education, teaching experience, and race) and random error basing mainly on the mentoring programmes that are given to teachers. The results of this investigation suggested that a school having a mentor program to assist beginning teachers is less important for teacher commitment than is the quality of assistance provided to new teachers. That is, simply offering formal mentoring programs did not appear to improve the commitment of teachers. But, the average commitment of teachers increased if, according to the teaching staff as a whole, new teachers were effectively assisted in matters of discipline, instruction, and adjustment to the school environment, whether from a mentor program or some other mechanism. While these findings seem to be very good, they do not bring out a clear picture of how teachers‟ commitment influences their performance in Busiro County secondary schools, Wakiso district.
Choy, Shan, Hun, & Bann (1993) investigated on teacher professionalization and teacher commitment in „A multilevel analysis‟ where they found out that those proponents of teacher professionalization have an argument that an improvement in the commitment of teachers is one of the outcomes most likely to be positively affected by the new teacher reform efforts.