Technical Teacher Supply for the 3-3 Secondary School System in Nigeria: Progress Problems and Prospects.
This study set out to assess the adequacy of the supply of Nigerian Certificate in Education (Technical) teachers - qualitatively and quantitatively - for the teaching of Introductory Technology in the Junior Secondary Schools. The technical teachers considered for this study were teachers trained in technical teacher training institutions and awarded the Nigerian Certificate of Education (Technical). The focus of attention in the new Secondary School system was the junior secondary school while the pre-vocational subject considered was Introductory Technology. Five sets of questionnaires were constructed for this study and each set was indicative of the group of respondents on whom the questionnaire was administered: These were: 1. Provost/Rector Questionnaire (P/RQ). 2. Head of Department Questionnaire (HDQ). 3. Technical Student - Teacher Opinionnaire (TSTO) 4. Principal of Secondary School Questionnaire (PSSQ) 5. Technical Teacher Satisfaction Questionnaire (TTSQ) A pilot test was carried out to determine the validity and reliability of research instrument. The five sets of questionnaires were validated by a jury of twelve members. A total of fiftyeight respondents took part in the reliability exercise. The instruments yielded reliability coefficients of 0.93 for the P/RQ, 0.77 for HDQ, 0.8 for TTSQ, 0.93 for the PSSQ and 0.6 for the TTSQ. The research was conducted in ten technical teacher training institutions and 281 Secondary Schools spread over ten states of the Federation. All Secondary Schools utilized for this study had graduated at least its first set of Junior Secondary School Students. A total of 1,145 respondents made up of ten provosts/rectors, forty-two heads of departments, 208 technical teachers, 281 secondary school teachers and 604 technical student teachers participated in this study. Eight hundred and seventy-six questionnaires representing 76.8 per cent response ratio were returned and analysed for the research.Four research questions and two related hypotheses were designed for this study. Both descriptive and inferential statistics were employed in analysing the data gathered. The descriptive statistics used were percentile, frequency counts and mean scores while the inferential statistics employed were student-test and product moment correlation. Extensive use was made of five point rating scale. To determine the margin of response, a cut-off point of 2.5 was adopted. Any response therefore, with a mean rating of 2.5 and above was regarded as high rating while mean ratings below 2.5 were regarded as low. The study revealed that: 1. Technical teachers were in short supply for the teaching of Introductory Technology. 2. A good number of teachers teaching Introductory Technology were non-professional teachers holding such certificates as Higher National Diploma (HND). 3. Both enrolment and supply targets of the institutions were too low to enable them produce enough teachers for the Junior Secondary Schools. 4. NCE (Technical) programmes were inadequate for effective teaching of Introductory Technology. 5. Poor facilities, inadequate staffing, poor funding and low enrolment were identified as causal factors in the failure of the institutions to produce adequately for the junior secondary schools. 6. For majority of respondents the teaching profession was a stepping stone and, given the opportunity, they would opt out into other professionals. Based on the above findings, some recommendations were made. Highlights of these were: 1. The four technical teacher training institutions proposed to take off during the Fifth Development Plan period should be established immediately. All existing conventional colleges of education should offer technical teachers education courses. 2. Considering that technical teacher education is science oriented, efforts should be made to improve science education at the secondary school level in order to expand the enrolment base of technical teacher institutions. 3. Adequate provision should be made for all Nigerian Certificate in Education (Technical) awarding institutions to implement the newly recommended curriculum for the programme. This is necessary in order to align the curriculum with the course content of Introductory Technology.4. Programme aimed at increasing salaries and fringe benefits of technical teachers, improving their status and creating better career opportunities for the technical teachers to pursue higher studies in technical educational is very necessary.