The topic research on was “influences of commission on administrative climate of secondary schools in Nsukka Education Zone of Enugu State”. A-24 item questionnaire was developed by the researcher and administered to 410 respondents male and female secondary school principals and teachers in Nsukka Education Zone of Enugu State. Means and standard deviation were used to answer the four research questions whereas the t-tests standards was used to test two research hypothesis that guided the study. It was the opinions of the male and female secondary school principals and teachers that the medium of communication in schools includes face to face conferences, staff meetings, notice boards, circular letters and oral announcements. The opinions of the male and female secondary school principals and teachers shows that the obstacles to effective exchanges of ideas and information in schools includes misconception of information by the teachers, principals and students, inappropriate encoding and decoding of information, noise around the school environment among others. The opinions of the male and female secondary school principals and teachers shows that the strategies to promote effective communication in schools are allowing free flow of information, the maintenance of open door policy by the principals, the use of information communication technology (ICT) in the storage and retrieval of information owning others highly advocated from the findings of this study. Finally, there was no significant different in the mean opinions of the male and female teachers and principals on the problems and the measures that enhances effective communication in secondary schools in Nsukka Education Zone of Enugu State.
Background to the Study
The concept of communication has been defined in various ways by scholars. According to Udeze (2006), communication refers to the exchange of informational transmission of ideas in organization to enhance the attainment of the stipulated objectives. Jones (2001) further noted that communication is the transfer of information from the sender to the receiver and with the information being understood, by the receiver. Communication can take place not only between individuals but also between firms, institutions, local government department and other organizations. The ability to communicate has enabled man to build societies, organizations and other social edifices that make for survival and better living. (Okeke, 2003:41).
This is in line with the conventional wisdom that where there is a breakdown in communication, there will be a breakdown in civilization. In the ancient time, the dissemination of information revolved essentially around the use of pictures on the walls, gesture writing, instruments such as gung, flutes, drums etc. According to Ibrahim (2006), the discovery of teaching in the modern period has enhanced the era of sophisticated communication techniques such as teleconference, video-conference, reprographic and electrical mails, thus reducing the whole world to a global village. All these medium are expected to be used by school principals in their daily dealings. Communication therefore are refers to the exchange of ideas and information in organization ancient at attain in the stipulated objectives.
The administration of secondary schools are at the hands of the principals and has team of internal supervisors like the Head of Department, Vice-principals, Dean of studies helped who him perform his job. Administration refers to the control and co-ordination of man and materials resources of a organization in order to attain the stipulated objectives (Ugwu, 2003:20). Mgbodile (2004) defines administration as the application of administrative principles to the solution of management or organizational problems.
Furthermore, Ogbonna (2008) defines administration the utilization of human, financial and materials resources in the realization of the organizational objectives. Administration therefore refers to the utilization of all resources or the directing and controlling the affairs of the organization to attain the stipulated objectives.
In the secondary school organization, the work of the principal is to use his knowledge of communication to influence teaching behaviour in such a way as to improve the quality of teaching-learning process in the school. This can be achieved when principal’s communication skill makes him to work directly with teachers in the planning, description, analysis and evaluation of teaching and in the development and implementation of new approaches to achieve the school objectives. In other words, the principal needs to adopt an appropriate communication pattern that can create conducive administrative climate to enhance productivity in the school in line with all the elements of administration like planning, controlling, coordinating, decision-making, organizing and evaluation of the entire system.
The administrative climate as used here refers to the conditions that are favourable to the school principals in the discharge of statutory functions. The communication pattern should be a two-way process, from principals to teachers and vice versa. Administrative climate refer to the organizational atmosphere which promotes or mar the proper control and co-ordination of the man and material resources of an organization towards the attainment of its stipulated goals (Jones, 2002:20). The school atmosphere should be conducive and congenial for everyone to stay and work in relative comfort and security. This implies that the school head has two primary types of climate: reward and laissez-faire. In a reward climate: rewards are merit based, goals are clear and relationships and employee welfare are important. In a laissez faire climate, management is disorganized, rewards are status based and conflict goes unresolved. The adequacy and appropriateness of information and its communication determine to a large extent the way teachers and non-teaching staff perceive and react to the school condition and environment to gain the school objectives (Ubong, 2004:40). Administrative climate therefore refers to the conditions which principals of schools operate in the performance of their roles to improve teaching and learning. The conditions can improve or mar the stipulated objectives.
In secondary schools, principals are at the helm of affairs in many respects, especially administrative and supervisory functions (Okeke, 2006:30). They assign instructional responsibilities to teachers, prepare the school time table, supervise instruction and plan for internal and external examinations. These functions which principal play have been grouped by Akabogu, Ndu and Ukeje (2001:53) under three main areas as, improving the schools educational programmes, selecting improving personnel welfare and general management of the school. These functions which enhance the growth of the school constitute its administrative climate.
In order to ensure effective administrative climate in the school, the principals as chief executives of their schools need to plan well by communicating policies, information and decisions to staff and students. Certainly, of all the managerial functions of secondary school principals, none consumes as much time as that of communication. Obviously if communication is hindered, the entire school system suffers (Ugwu, 2006:20).
On the other hand, when communication is accurate, open and timely, secondary schools move effectively towards creating appropriate administrative climate for teaching and learning to take place. This is because ideas and information flows freely from top to down and vice-verse, Peretomode (2003) presented four main purpose of communication in a school system. According to him, communication is aimed to: Influence the performance of organizational members – to motivate, direct, instruct and evaluate, clarify and express feelings, serve as an information input or exchange, control behaviour of all in the organization.
In order to ensure effective communication in the school system, secondary school principals are expected to adopt appropriate media and other channels of communication. The pattern of communication according to Okunamiri (2007) includes the use of circulars, notice boards, seminars, conferences, meetings, committees system. All these methods of communication in secondary schools will help in no small measure in attaining the school objectives. This is because the teachers should be kept abreast of what is going on in the school hence, they are not hanging on the balance on all the activities required of them or the school authority in the attainment of the objective.
Furthermore, personal contact with teachers, non-verbal messages among others enhances the smooth communication in the school which the school principals can avail themselves with. It is sometimes argued that female school principals adopt all available information media at their disposals to enable the teachers to be kept in touch with all the activities that go on in the school unlike their male counterparts (Osuala, 2001:30). He argued that female principals are more diligent in looking at all possible areas like the problems of teachers and learners when
may impede the administrative of the school. Generally the principal should ensure that administrative information flows downwards from themselves (principals) through the teacher to the students. They should equally ensure that rumours (information without source) do not circulate in their schools. Principals should not allow communication to be a one-lane affair. They must also communicate upwards downwards, reactions, developments and feelings in the lower rank of the school hierarchy.
The importance of communication has long been accorded recognition in the management of schools. According to Bass (2005) communication is needed to establish and disseminate the goals of a school as well as organize the human and material resources in the most effective and efficient manner”. When there is a communication gap lapses or where communication is not effective, principals cannot give instructions out, teachers cannot receive information, and instructions and all the administrative policies and practices in the school system cannot be clearly spelt out or known. Also, the coordination of administrative climate will be poor or completely impossible.
Unfortunately, the researcher has observed that there are often poor connection and interaction gaps between most principals and teachers leading to misinterpretation of information. From the researcher experience a lot of fear and distrust exist between teachers and students in most schools. The
researcher has also discovered that some principals do not communicate necessary information to their teachers and even when they do, the information communicated conflicts are distorted. Eze (2003) in impersonal interactions with teachers in the zone under study shows that teachers complain that the communication between the principal, teachers and the students lacks openness and in most cases leads to conflicts. In a situation like this, the administrative climate of the schools is jeopardized. The present study therefore is a product of the researcher’s observation that most secondary schools in Enugu State face communication problems which consequently threaten the administrative climate of the schools in Enugu State. This study is therefore designed to investigate the influence of communication on administrative climate of secondary schools in Nsukka Education Zone of Enugu State.
Statement of the Problem
The concept of communication is as old as human race. The system of communication in information and formal organizations has received an alarming attention in recent years. Both individuals and organizations are equally aware of the critical role of communication in modern society today.
The school as a social organization needs effective and efficient communication system by the principal to enhance teaching and learning. The school principal has a lot of roles to play in the school such as the supervision of instruction, general administration of the school, maintaining school community relations. Other roles are maintaining a balance in the student-personnel services personal seniors and staff-personnel services in the school system all which are aimed at improving the teaching and learning processes in the school.
These cardinal roles can only be attained with effective communication system in the school which may be verbal or non-verbal. The issue at state is to investigate the influence of communication on administrative climate of secondary schools. This study therefore, posed as a questions, “what are the influence of communication on administrative climate of secondary schools in Nsukka Education Zone of Enugu State. This study is relevant so as to bridge the gap between the principals roles as the school head and the teachers to ensure efficient communication system to promote teaching and learning in schools.
Purpose of the Study
The main purpose of the study is to investigate how communication influences administrative climate in Secondary Schools in Enugu State with particular reference to Nsukka Education Zone. Specifically, the study aims is to:
Significance of the Study
This study is significant, as it will favour the following groups: students, teachers, principals and policy makers in education. The findings of will be of immense benefit to the students in that when the administrative climate of their school is
conducive enough, they will be properly taught and this will produce conducive learning. When the atmosphere for learning is conducive enough, the result will be the student’s high academic performance.
The teachers will also benefit from the findings of this research. They will be motivated to teach, and know what is around them in the school. This can be done via seminars or conferences organized based on school communication pattern.
It will also be of immense benefit to the principals in the sense that when they generate effective communication that produces conducive administrative climate in their schools, there will be adequate interaction between them and the teachers. This will lead to the teachers’ high performance in the school and thus promoting the status of the schools where the principals administer.
The finding of this study will equally enable secondary school principals to know the strategies necessary for effective communication in Secondary Schools in Nsukka Education Zone of Enugu State. The findings of the study will help the educational planners to be aware of the obstacles that can hinder effective communication in Secondary School. The principals will immerse benefit through conferences or seminars organized on importance
of communication to school administrative. It will enable them to combine both formal and informal communication methods to attain the set objectives.
The Government will also appreciate the need for constant workshops for principals to know the current trends concerning communication in the school system. This can be done via workshops organized by the Government for all the stakeholders involved in educational planners and implementers of secondary schools.