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EFFECTS OF PRINCIPALS’ ADMINISTRATIVE PRACTICES ON TEACHERS’ JOB PERFORMANCE IN PUBLIC SECONDARY SCHOOLS

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 Dec 19, 2022 |  03:12 pm |  97

EFFECTS OF PRINCIPALS’ ADMINISTRATIVE PRACTICES ON TEACHERS’ JOB PERFORMANCE IN PUBLIC SECONDARY SCHOOLS 

EFFECTS OF PRINCIPALS’ ADMINISTRATIVE PRACTICES ON TEACHERS’ JOB PERFORMANCE IN PUBLIC SECONDARY SCHOOLS IN KATHIANI SUB-COUNTY, KENYA


CHAPTER ONE INTRODUCTION

Background to the Study


The success and development of the school system depends on the quality and nature of the principals’ administrative strategies. School leaders are essential to the success of their school, its staff, and most importantly its students (Schmoker, 2012). Onyango (2011) asserts that the head teacher is vested with the responsibility of all the administrative tasks. The success of the principal relies on their administrative capacities to make reasonable decisions for effective administration. Performance of teachers and academic results of students has been attributed to administrative practices of school principals (Spillane, 2015). Thus, the principals play a major role in ensuring that teachers perform their job effectively which is reflected in the students’ performance (Wallace Foundation, 2015). Onuma (2015) observed that, for effective management of the education system, the school principal is expected to have certain essential leadership and administrative skills being that he/she is the leader and administrator of the system.


World over, school principals’ abilities and powers as the authority and leader of the school have turned into matters of worry as there are public cries on how they direct school activities. School principal influences teachers to work willingly towards the achievement of school goals and the desire of the teachers to follow them makes the principal a leader. The leadership roles of the school principal are demonstrated in planning, coordination, supervision, decision- making and motivation of staff and these are what distinguish him as the head (Issah, 2013). It is evident that good leadership plays a key role in enhancing performance. This is achieved through effective coordination which is characterized by adoption of educational planning, cogent school programs, adequate staffing and facilities. If the leadership fails, every other resource fails (Issah, 2013).


A number of United Kingdom (UK) researchers argue that leadership is one of the most important aspects in determining the success of educational institutions (Harris, 2010). In the USA, the school principal is the highest-ranking administrator in an elementary, middle, or high school. They are responsible for the overall operation of their schools. This take the form

 

of seeing to it that facilities and equipment are safe and in good working order, the development of overall school discipline policies and the enforcement of those policies, and the assignment of supervisory responsibilities among school personnel (Buckner, 2019).


In China, leadership for teaching and learning has long been viewed as the core work of school leadership. This implies that the principal is the supreme leader handling the core business of his/her school (Feng, 2020). The school principal is also tasked with the responsibility of handling school major issues such as developing or revising school charter, formulating school development plans, annual and semester work plans and curriculum plans; setting out major reform initiatives or new rules and regulations; change of intra school institutions and posts; appointment or removal of middle managers or other important personnel arrangements; approval of the action plan for teacher development; discussing and deciding annual budget, final accounts and the plan of large expenditure; examining the appraisal scheme of teachers and supporting staff associated with the performance related pay; formulating school policy concerning enrollment and graduation; and supervising school major infrastructure projects (Feng, 2020).


World Bank (2018) research on the working conditions of teachers in low- and middle-income countries indicated that teachers in many developing countries are not provided with basic working conditions to conduct effective teaching and ultimately deliver the learning expected by the system, parents and society. These conditions vary from basic teaching supplies to living conditions, from school belongingness to social status, from professional development to career advancement. The analysis indicated variation in teacher working conditions and motivation is huge within each country and across countries and this affects teachers’ job performance.


As noted by Gathumbi, Mwanza and Lucia (2017) the school principal identifies and sets goals and objectives of the school which ought to be aligned with the national objectives in Nigeria. They also added that the principal also analyses tasks and shares responsibilities to the staff according to specialization and expertise. In Tanzania, the school principal is tasked with the administration of all the school operations with an aim of promoting the effectiveness and the quality of education. This is clearly stated in the Education and Training Policy document of Tanzania. This encompasses overseeing and organizing training and retraining of teachers and supervising teachers to ensure that they conduct their roles (Massawe, 2014).

 

School principals are responsible for supervision of teachers with an aim of ensuring that school objectives are achieved through effective teaching and efficient learning. In this regard, principals assist teachers in refining their competencies essential for better teaching of the disciplines (Heaton, 2016). School principals with better supervision take feedback and then further guide and move teachers towards desired work and objectives (Zepeda, 2014). Supervisory techniques help in achieving teachers’ better performance and this can be accelerated through supervision practices for example; visiting classrooms, appraising, and workshops/seminars (Yousaf, 2018). Effective supervision is the process by which the principal is responsible for providing a link between individual teacher needs and organizational goals so that individuals within the school can work as a team to achieve set targets (Kerio, 2012).


The school principal also plays the role of being a motivator. Motivation helps to energize, direct and sustain positive behavior over a long period of time towards particular goals. Teacher’s motivation has become an important issue given their responsibility to impart knowledge and skills to learners. Teachers’ motivation is that drive that is exerted on teachers to improve their professional tasks with enthusiasm (Wilson, 2013). As noted by Boma (2018) a school principal must not only be trained in the act of administration but must be well- acquainted with the principles that guide and control administrative processes. The study concluded that the type of administrative process adopted by the principal influences the attitude of the staff which can motivate them to put in their best at achieving educational goals through an effective teaching-learning process. Motivation enhances job performance (Wambua, 2012). Wambua (2012) also asserted that the principal is the critical person in making change to occur which is very obligatory and the principals are expected to deploy the administrative practices in adapting to this change and affecting it in the school system. According to Sheldon (2013), relevance of teacher job satisfaction and are very crucial to the long-term growth of any educational system around the world. This is alluding to the fact that proper motivation of teachers translates to better teacher job performance.


Staff development practices helps in grooming teachers and achieving better teacher job performance (Ekpoh, Edet & Nkama, 2013). This is achieved through making their tasks interesting and increases the chances of job satisfaction and growth. For the improvement of the overall standard of education, teachers’ professional development practices of principals must be given serious consideration. Staff development practices of principals respond to

 

teachers’ requirements and improve supervisory competence (Yousaf, 2018). Hence, principals should offer professional and continuous development including coursework, seminars and learning chances for better development of teachers. According to Zepeda (2014), staff development is imperative for better supervision as it helps in teachers’ preparations and making education a learning experience. Satisfactory staff development practices help in offering required training to the teachers, also with respect to curriculum and team work (Jill & Betty, 2012).


Consequently, another important component for quality teacher’s performance is delegation of duties by the principal. This is the act of assigning duties to the juniors by the seniors such that the juniors take charge and have control over the environment. Masaku, Muola and Kimiti (2018) see delegation as the “accomplishment of work through others”. The study concluded that the school, by its nature, is a complex organization where delegation of duties is unavoidable; it is therefore important for all school managers and administrators at whatever level, primary, secondary or tertiary to understand the concept of delegation; what determines it, its importance and how to use it effectively. Muma and Odhiambo (2019) posited that in schools where delegation of duties is done in a professional way dissatisfaction has gone down to normal levels, principals have their individual interests restored and school performance has improved.


Delegation of duties leads to motivation of subordinates as it encourages them to give their best at work when they have authority with responsibility. They take more initiative and interest in work and are careful and cautious in their work. Delegation leads to motivation of employees and workforce development (Iqbal, Anwar & Haider, 2015). As noted by Masaku, Muola and Kimiti (2018), delegating duties regularly accomplishes more than just taking some work off of the principal’s enormous task. The research findings postulate that when done effectively, delegation can increase the degree to which teachers are invested in the success of the school. When teachers play a larger role in managing the school, they have better understanding of the rigors of keeping the institution going and feel more involved in the school’s success which is likely to increase their commitment, experience and professional development (Masaku, Muola & Kimiti, 2018).


Seashore Louis, Dretzke and Wahlstrom (2010) in their extensive studies in the developing countries, Kenya included, demonstrates a positive impact on teaching and learning

 

environments attributed to effective principal administrative practices which result to improved teacher performance and better academic achievements. It is clear that school leadership provided by the principal is fundamental in enhancing performance of teachers and student achievements. Umosen, Uko and Caleb (2015) avers that teachers' job performance refers to the extent to which teachers are committed to pedagogical delivery and display of moral uprightness as well as academic excellence in the teaching profession. The quality of the school is affected by how internal mechanisms work to constantly improve performance of teachers. School principal oversees curriculum and instruction processes, facilitates teachers’ motivation and professional development, and delegate duties that are supportive of best practices (Umosen, Uko & Caleb, 2015).


As stated by Stronge (2018), teacher job performance encompasses the teacher’s role of teaching pupils in and outside the classroom. The key aspects of teaching involve the use of instructional materials, teaching methods, making professional documents, participating in co- curriculum activities and guiding the learners. Therefore, teacher job performance is the teacher’s ability to integrate the experience, teaching methods, instructional materials, knowledge and skills in delivering subject matter to the learners in and outside the classroom (Owala, Odongo & Raburu, 2016). Ministry of Education Science and Technology, [MOEST] (2005), identified teachers as one of the most important inputs to the education system. The efficient administration and utilization of this resource therefore remains critical to the quality of learning outcomes (Nilsen & Gustafsson, 2016).


The success of any school in Kenya is measured by the quality of grades attained in national examinations (Bunyi, 2013). Secondary schools in Kenya have performed differently every year in the national examinations. One clear contributing factor is the principal’s administrative practices been collegial and successful or individualized system and dismal performance. Principals’ administrative practices ensure that each of the components that contribute to improved teacher performance outcomes is present, working effectively and aligned with all other elements (Owan & Agunwa, 2019). The interest in raising levels of performance has led to a focus identifying the range of practices that shape performance as well as understanding of how these practices operate to enhance the performance of different groups of teachers. This study will therefore seek to establish the effects of principals’ administrative practices on teachers’ job performance in public secondary schools in Kathiani Sub- County.

 

Statement of the Problem


Principals’ administrative practices are an important management function concerned with obtaining, developing and motivating the human resources required by a school to achieve its objectives (Lunenburg, 2010). This pressurizes school principals as they are expected to provide an enabling working environment for teacher’s high productivity through administration support practices (Onuma, 2015). However, there are underlying issues with regard to how effectively principals execute their duties in provision of administrative services as the teacher job performance in most Kenyan secondary schools is below expectations (Atwala, 2011). The situation is even worse in Kathiani Sub-County statistics which show that most of the secondary schools have recorded a mean score below 4.5 in KCSE between 2015 and 2019 except in 5 schools with a mean score above 4.5 (Musyoka, 2018). The poor performance of students is a reflection of poor teacher job performance which implies that principals do not effectively provide administrative support practices to teachers in areas of supervision, motivation, professional development, and delegation of duties for maximum productivity (Pont, Nusche, & Moorman, 2018).


Several studies focusing on principal’s administrative practices have been carried out. For instance, a study by Nzoka and Orodho (2014) evaluated the relationship between school management and students’ academic performance with regard to the effectiveness of strategies being employed by school managers in secondary schools in Embu North District, Embu County, Kenya. Another study by Iroegbu and Etudor-Eyo (2016) focused on establishing the relationship between principals’ instructional supervision and teachers’ effectiveness. These studies reveal both conceptual and contextual gaps. Conceptual gaps exist as these studies related principals’ administrative practices with students’ academic performance, principals’ performance and effectiveness of teachers’ competence. In the case of contextual gaps, none of the study focused on Kathiani Sub-County. With an aim of filling in this gap, this study examined principals’ administrative practices and their effects on teachers’ job performance in public Secondary schools in Kathiani Sub-County, Kenya.




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