Teacher Motivation and Intervening Influence of Human Factor on Optimal Productivity in Secondary Schools in Nigeria

C.A. John, S. S. Manabete


One fundamental problem bedevilling education in Nigeria generally and secondary education in particular is how teacher professional development and motivation can be more meaningfully and vigorously pursued as to lead to teacher optimal productivity. A key answer to this problem lies in reassessing the commitment of stakeholders in the education sector. How much commitment to teacher professional development and motivation has been exhibited by government, educational institutions, the society and the teachers themselves? In what way and manner has government instituted policies and programmes and then pursued the policies and programmes to logical conclusion? What is the perception of the society about teaching as a profession and teachers at the centre of curriculum implementation? How determined have the teachers been in pursuing further professional development?

It has been lamented that the quality of teachers educational institutions have turned out has been poor (Shuaibu, 2001). Some have blamed this problem on government, stressing that government has not done enough to professionally develop and motivate teachers such as to lead to their commitment towards optimal productivity (Oluwakemi, 2012). Others have blamed the problem on the society which does not see the teaching profession and teachers with the regard they deserve (Jikah, 2012). Consequently, teaching is seen as a job that “does not pay”.

According to Mbachu (2008), the so called teaching profession in Nigeria is characterised by poor funding, poor salary structure, delay or non-payment of salaries and other fringe benefits, and poor working conditions. The teaching profession offers unattractive conditions. Consequently, due to the bad societal perception of the teaching profession and the low level of motivation, the teaching profession in Nigeria has continued to experience brain drain. Trained teachers are now moving away from the teaching profession in search of greener pastures. Some of the teachers who have remained in the profession have engaged in funny practices like examination malpractices, all with the aim of earning more money to meet some life challenges. Furthermore, because the teaching profession is not accorded the kind of status it deserves, teachers in training do not devote themselves adequately to training, viewing that after all, the job pays very little (Jikah, 2012).

If teachers must be committed to their work and perform optimally, their motivation and professional development must be given serious attention. This paper therefore, examines the concept of the human factor, the human factor characteristics and the conditions for achieving optimal productivity based on the HF concept. who the teacher is. It treats teacher professional training and development. The paper examines the need for teachers’ effort at professional training and development. The paper looks at the paradigm for effective teacher training and development. The paper also considers motivation for enhanced teacher productivity. Finally the paper considers the need for school administrators’ continuous managerial training and development.

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ISSN (Paper)2224-5731 ISSN (Online)2225-0972

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