ADJUSTMENT DIMENSION OF RETIRED TEACHERS IN ONUEKE EDUCATION ZONE OF EBONYI STATE
Background of the Study
Occupation has a serious influence on peoples’ sense, of identity. Withdrawing from it makes a phenomenal development in his/her life. Alutu (1999) sees this development to become crucial because one’s dimensions of life are changed from what it is used to be in terms of dressing, official hour, interactions with colleagues in the office, and even attitude to the life of retired workers. Hornby (2000) describes retirement as the period of life after one has stopped work at any particular age. It is the act of stopping a particular type of work, especially in sports or in polities due to age or years on the job.
Olusakin (1999) equally defines retirement as a situation in which a person leaves a job he has been used to do in order to face another stage in his/her life whereby he now settles down to establish their own private job, which he/she does at one’s own convenience. Richardson and Atchley in Gillian (2004) define retirement as a transitional stage of life that can be a pleasant experience and traumatic for others which depends on the way the person concerned, perceives it. Retirement can mean different things to different people in society. Some feel that retirement is reducing the number of work hours per week, from full-time to part-time work and for others, it is working on a voluntary basis or ceasing from all work activities, paid or unpaid. Gillian (2004) defines retirement as the disengagement from business or public life, at which when one retires, the worker is no longer gainfully employed and begins to receive retirement benefits. Goold (2007) regards retirement as an important stage in human development that bring changes in life that require adjustments in identity, thinking, feeling, and actions. Asuquo (2007) sees retirement as a complex social phenomenon that signifies the detachment from customary activities in business, industry, or active service as a full-time employee.
Kaplan cited in Ukwuayi (2002) believes that retirement is the formal disengagement of a worker from a line of work in which he has made a career. Dada and Idowu (2003) define retirement as a transition from the world of work into a world of less rigorous work activity and rest especially in respect of retirement due to old age or long years of service.
Marshall (2004) says some may see retirement as reducing the number of work hours per week from full-time to part-time status, while others see it as working on a voluntary basis. Schley 1988, Richardson (1999) describe the traditional view of retirement to mean when one is no longer gainfully employed and receives benefits. But can engage in any other meaningful activities in order to earn his/her living in the society. Ukwuayi (2002) defines retirement as withdrawal from position or service, going away, retreating, or removal from work. Abiola (2000) sees retirement as occupational death as opposed to biological death. Despite these subjective and objective definitions, views, and opinions of retirement, one can agree that retirement requires a reduction of activities prior to the later stages of life.
In my own view and contribution, retirement is a process whereby one retires from the activities of his/her youthful age to the adult age but still engage in other ventures in order to make ends meet.
The researcher says that anyone who is interested in the issues surrounding labor-management relations in Nigeria will believe with me that the real problems facing Nigeria teachers are that they are unmotivated and underappreciated because they are not being paid their retirements benefits due to them as at and when due and no teacher at both primary and secondary school levels are been given contract jobs to do such as engaging them to teach again as it happened in the case of the lecturers in the higher institutions after their retirement, when the teacher in this category retires, so they are left like that to suffer without anybody coming to their rescue or their aids.
The researcher also maintains that the reward system of teachers in Nigeria is very poor and not being paid living wages, they are seen to be used as rag and discarded without effective retirement and social securities and salaries benefits which in this situations, one retired teacher died on the farm when working because he is working with an empty stomach and also the case of another retired teacher who died on his way to collect his benefits. With this ugly situation, the retired teachers find it difficult to plan for good adjustment in their retirement which can lead to the psychological well-being of a retired teacher, and also if taking care of, it will prolong their life span after retirement.
Omeje (2002) States two types of retirement as follows: Voluntary and Mandatory while Omoresemi (1987) Akande (1995) and Olusakin (1999) stated three major forms of retirement as voluntary, Compulsory, and mandatory retirement. The statutory age of retirement is in section 4(1) of the Pension ACT of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. The act prescribes 60 years as the age of compulsory retirement for public servants and 65 years for judicial officers. Also the Decree No. 43 of 1989 added another element to the provision by specifying that teachers who have worked for 35 years or have attained 60 years of age should retire compulsorily.
Asuquo and Maliki (2007) describe voluntary retirement as that which occurs when the individual decides to quit active service for personal reasons irrespective of age, experience, length of service, or retirement policies. It depends more on the employee than the employer which most of the voluntary retirement plan requires a minimum number of years of work before the employee is eligible for retirement. In Nigeria, the minimum number of years of work presently before the employee qualities for voluntary retirement with benefits in public service such as a teacher is the period of 10 years.
Donnelly (1996) cited in Ukwuayi (2002) says that in a typical year an average of (10) percent of teachers who are eligible for retirement retire early, but it is related to the benefit from the service rendered. UKwuayi (2002) observes that the united state census Bureau found out that men retire early and voluntarily than women. Asuquo and Maliki (2006) describe compulsory retirement as a situation in which the individual is forced or complied to retire against the individual's will or expectation and especially when he is ill-prepared for it. Penner (1986) says it is usually viewed negatively because it is unplanned and reasons mighty include inefficiency, old age, ill-health, indiscipline, and need for reduction of the workforce.
Akinade (1993) describes mandatory retirement as the normal or expected form of retirement in the sense that the person involved has reached the statutory age of retirement as specified already in the condition of civil service of the establishment. Asugwu (2002) says in Nigeria for example, the age specification for the teachers is 60 years while judges and lectures retire at the age of 65 years or when the teacher has put in 35 years of service, whether voluntary, compulsory and mandatory, retirement is known to bring about a lot of social psychological, physiological and financial effects on retirees. Asuquo and Maliki (2007) say that it can be anticipated as threatening or challenging when the people who attempt to adjust to the exigency of retirement do so in various ways depending on how prepared they are psychologically, socially, economically, vocationally, politically, and spiritually.
Akande (2004) summarizes the following as his own types of retirement policy, they are:
1. Early retirement: This arises from ill-health and organizational requests.
2. Voluntary retirement: It is seen as an exercise of one’s right.
3. Late retirement: This is in line with the conforming to organization policy.
4. Gradual or phased retirement: It is a result of the desire for self-actualization.
5. Force retirement: It is on the basis of the retrenchment before the time of retirement and finally, retirement which can be done due to redundancy, ill-health, and unproductivity, which is known as an unplanned retirement.
Asuguo (2007) in his studies, identified certain basics features of retirement:
Firstly, he sees retirement as a period of transition and a change in a variety of ways, changes in value, habits, daily routine, lifestyle, living arrangement, self-concept, role, use of time, financial adjustment, and adjustment in age.
Secondly, retirement involves a reassessment of life which entails the careful recording of personal identity and life pattern especially as it affects new tasks, physical, mental, financial capabilities, prospects, social engagements and home maintenance feeding, furniture fees, and vehicles.
Thirdly, it provides an opportunity for personal satisfaction, proper utilization of intellect and skills as well as for learning, growth in leisure and recreational activities.
Odu (1998) observes that people who plan for their retirement well in advance, adjust well to retirement and they are likely to go through it as a honeymoon phase in which they are quite active or maybe through it, as for the rest and relaxation phase of recuperating from the stresses and strains of employment. Adeboye and Legbara (1997) say that change is inevitable but most people tend to resist change because it is not always convenient. Ukwuayi (2002) believes that retirement anxiety affects the emotional, physical, social, psychological and vocational, political, and spiritual well-being or condition of the retired teacher. Adeboye and Legbara (1997) identify the case of Nigeria as different because some retirement has not been due to old age, or long service but to cut down expenses in the public and private sectors of the economy as well as political factors. Wolcott (1998) Quadagno (2002) attributed so many factors such as old age, ill-health, unhappiness with conditions of service, familiar consideration, rules of the job, and so on, can motivate retirement.
Olusakin (1999) stated many merits and demerits that associated with retirement in Nigeria situations like, husband and wife re-discovered themselves again better after a long period of time by giving them time to care for each other, it is a good psychological adjustment for teacher retirees because of the re-union which brings a lot of emotional balance for those involved. Also in another dimension, some teacher retirees find time to do those things that they always wanted to do which they can not do, when they were in service like family projects such as poultry farming, a fishery that is, in line with the economic adjustment dimension of the retirees. Oyelusi (2004) says it gives them room to involves themselves in social, vocational, political, and spiritual, and also educational development in their society. In a brief illustration, socially, a retiree has time to socialize with his/her friends, attend village/community meetings for them to discuss the welfare of the entire community. Vocationally, the retired teacher still has an opportunity to engage him/herself in skills acquisition, trading, or being self-reliant or entrepreneur. Politically, the teacher retirees may decide to join politics by becoming seriously active in politics, if he/she feels strong enough to embark on such ventures in order to earn their living.
Spiritually, the retirees may feel like been devoted to the Christian life which he has not to be opportune to do at the time of his active service. For example, attending churches regularly, church meetings, and devotion to some of the Pius societies in the church. Educationally, retirees, for example, a professor never retires rather his retirement may give him/her the opportunity to be busier with research work, and that he still takes some course in masters degree in business administration and also writes books.
Okunola in Akinnde (1993) listed the demerits of retirement developmental crisis, which some teacher retirees suffer in silence as they experience a variety of discomfort, poverty, declining physiological and psychological wellbeing. Omoresemi (1987) Re-emphasized that retirement problems include living arrangements, isolation, lack of fellowship, disabilities, gerontological diseases, mental health, senility (loss of memory, lack of substantial income, rejection state of apathy, poor physical, dejection and living with oneself in every situation.
Alutu (1999) pointed out that teachers retirees adopted unprofessional patterns in coping with their retirement life even though there have not been much scholarly proves on the adjustment dimension of teachers retirees but early studies have shown that teacher retirees are finding it difficult to cope with retirement because of the way they look depressed and some will even lose weight.
Dike (1999) noted that well-managed retirement benefits for teachers can go far to encourage or boost the morale and productivity of other teachers, but the reverse is the case where many of the teachers get bogged down, worrying about their fate after being retired and with this, they will be frustrated before their retirement day, thereby affecting their preparation for proper adjustment in their retirement. Meanwhile, for not adjusting properly before they are retired, they will start to experience adjustment problems and also suffering from the stress of the unknown.
In their retirement process, there is a need for proper adjustment dimensions that will take care of them. Nigeria Union of Teachers (NUT 1994) stated that some retired teachers are experiencing anxiety, economic problems, and other pathetic situations, that is what made those who are yet to retire use every means to carryout falsification of their records, reduction of their age by the swearing of an affidavit, pleading and some times bribe the officers-in-charge not to add or include their names among those due for retirement that month and based on their mentality, they regard retirement as a kind of victimization NUT (1994) Festa (2004).
The teacher retirees needed adjustment dimensions psychologically, socially, economically, vocationally, politically, and spiritually to enable the retirees to live well and free their mind from any of these problems when they retire from services either because of old age or long service that may shorten their life span after retirement also to cope with the activities in the society as a senior citizen. I see it necessary to properly analyze the variables that are contained in the purpose of the study, so as to know the direction of the study. Such variables are psychological, sociological, economical, vocational, political, and spiritual dimensions.
Alutu (1999) and Kevles (1999) describes the psychological adjustment dimension of teacher retirees as to show a retiree lives a healthy and emotionally balance lifestyle in society and how they relate well with other people around them, thinking, and communicating positively about life after service, whether they are feeling inferior or superior before others in the society.
Kevles (1999) believes that sociological adjusted teacher retirees relate well with their family members, he enjoys and cherishes any support given to him; see himself as somebody, not as nobody others and believed to have something to contribute to the development of his community and ready to take up any leadership roles among his kinsmen. He also makes efforts to strengthen his relationship with them, respect and appreciate others, even to go into games, etc.
For an economic adjusted teacher retirees which Akinnde (1993) Alutu (1999) Kevles (1999) and Olusakin (1999) believes to be one who planned well ahead for his retirement, by way of saving and putting in place other financial infrastructures that can enhance his income whenever he retires from service. Also, one who has no heavy debt and has finished training all his children and at the same time start a business with his retirement benefits.
In vocational adjustment, Myers in Kevles (1999) advises teacher retirees to take comfort from different jobs they have acquired and also the talents they have been accumulated over years and advice to be brave enough to make or contribute their own impact in the labor market as a self-employed entrepreneur. For the political adjustment dimension of teacher retirees, Frederick Hess and Juliet squire (2009) says research and commentary presented at a February 2009 conference on teacher retirement systems at Vanderbilt University were designed to address the gap in our knowledge about this important element of teacher political dimension, which stated that retirees will join active politics either by contesting elective positions or taking political appointment after his/her retirement from service in order to contribute his/her own quota in the development of the society.
Omoresemi (1987) advocated that the teacher retirees should need spiritual preparation, he needs to be conversant with the meaning of death, spiritual preparedness on how one will face realities of death. Also, a teacher retirees can be of help to others by assisting in organizing seminars and workshops on religious matters and having more time for religious activities which was not possible for him at the time of service.
It is against this background that the researcher is interested in carrying out an investigation on the relative effectiveness of adjustment dimensions of secondary school teacher retirees in Onueke Educational Zone of Ebonyi State of Nigeria and then to come up with a position to say how they are adjusting either positively or negatively.
Finally, in view of this background that Bukoye (2005) came up with a suggestion that the Federal Government should establish a retirement bureau in each state of the federation to address the problems of teacher retirees and to assist them from wasting away.
Statement of the Problem
In Nigeria today, anybody following the issues surrounding labor management will agree that the real problem facing Nigeria teachers is that they appear unmotivated and under-appreciated by their employers. This is because they are not being paid their retirement benefits and other entitlement due to them as at and when due during their working periods.
There are indications that the majority of the retired teachers are being bewildered, depressed, frustrated, confused and even, dying in their efforts to retain or find useful social roles in the society to sustain them. The major problems facing the retired teachers, appear to include maintenance income to meet their demands, discovering new occupations or roles to play socially, finding opportunities for companionship and affection, maintenance of health, and procurement of suitable living arrangements. In Nigeria and in Ebonyi State, in particular, sources of income appear not to be sufficient to satisfy their needs and those of their extended families that they supposed to help and to compound this problem, some of them have a large number of children who are still in schools and the older children may not be employed so as to assist their families.
Consequently, the teacher retirees appear frustrated and unable to feed well, suffer health problems, live in poor accommodation, no security, withdraw from the community or social activities or life because it is believed that once you don’t have money to throw around like others such as politicians, businessmen and women in the society that you are in the state of powerlessness and therefore eliminated from any social gathering where money will be involved because of not being well adjusted.
A lot of impressions in our national dailies, televisions, radios appear to be that the retirement life of teachers is nothing but a series of woes and frustration. This is characterized by delayed or non-payment of gratuity and pensions which affects the life of the retirees.
The problems facing teacher retirees in secondary schools create serious injuries on retirees in Nigeria and the Onueke Education zone of Ebonyi State in particular, in planning for proper adjustment in their retirement age. In respect to this dilemma facing retired teachers, the researcher decided to develop an interest to investigate how secondary school teacher retirees adjust psychologically, Sociologically, Economically, Vocationally, Politically, and spiritually during their retirement age.
Purpose of the Study
The purpose of this study is to investigate how and what dimensions the secondary school teacher retirees in the Onueke Education zone of Ebonyi State are using to make realistic adjustments in their period.
Specifically, the study intends to ascertain:
1. The psychological dimensions of adjustment among secondary school teacher retirees?
2. The sociological pattern of adjustment for teacher retirees in the Onueke Education zone?
3. The economical adjustment dimensions among secondary school teacher retirees?
4. The vocational adjustment dimensions for teacher retirees in the Onueke Education zone?
5. The political pattern of adjustment among secondary school teacher retirees?
6. The spiritual dimension of adjustment among secondary school teacher retirees?
Significance of the Study
The study will be of significance to the following and among whom are serving teachers, retired teachers, the government, guidance counselors, and the non-governmental organizations. the village head, relation to teacher/general public.
This study will enable the serving teachers to be aware of the various adjustment dimensions being employed by teacher retirees which will equip them with basic tools on psychological, sociological, economical, vocational, political, and spiritual adjustment dimensions, this will also help them to dispose of mind about their retirement time so to adjust to any circumstance they may find themselves when they retire from services.
For teacher retirees, this study will equally help them, on the need to be educated on various aspects of retirement adjustment program to enable them to get prepared to cope with the exigencies of retirement, which can make them adjust to all these variables stated above for their well-being in the society also, the result of this study will enlighten them to make themselves available to the workshops and seminars organized for them to boost their morale and be able to think of better ways to adjust in their retirement and this will increase their life expectancy and other problems encountered at the course of retirement. The Government will equally benefit from the finding because they will through the results be in a better position to make policies that will center on retirement in their civil service ruler to guide others also be of benefit to the teacher retirees. Moreover, efforts should be made by the school management board on how to assist, improve and sustain the optimistic perception of teachers on the need for retirement and retirement planning. So as to ensure a more favorable attitude towards it, through public enlightenment campaigns, workshops, seminars, symposiums, talks, and counseling services, so to enable both retired and serving teachers no more about the retirement to avoid mistakes.
The professional guidance counselors should be able to expand their scope of counseling beyond the school children and to extend it to retired teachers and other serving teachers in the states by using this study to design a program that will assist them to give an orientation of what it means to retire and the way to adjust when the teachers eventually retire from service and also to help teachers going for retirement, to understand the challenges that await them in their retirement, so to take adequate measure in handling and situations if arises at their period of retirement. The non-governmental organization will also find this study useful because it will help them to organize seminars and workshops for the retired teachers and serving teachers as part of their contribution to the human development in society. Such workshops and seminars can be carried out at the grassroots such as local government levels, state and federal levels, these kinds of activities will assist to improve the poor conditions of the teacher retirees and also income-generating ventures for the organizations.
- For churches, it will equally benefit from this study, if the leaders of various churches can be of help to their faithful in the church which at least 70% of them are civil servants by preaching to them the various ways to adjust after retirement. So that they will not be reluctant in their service and their contribution to the growth of the church economically.
- Village heads: The village or their leads can be of gain from this study because if the retirees adjust economically properly the village will stand a chance to benefit from him, in terms of his/her contribution to the village development and the village heads should know his financial stand in levying him or the way of carrying him/her along in the activities of the village.
- Relations of the teacher retirees: The relations stand the change of gaining from the retirees if he/she adjusts well economically and otherwise because since he/she is well prepared for retirement, he can be supporting his/her family members in any of the project going on before him and equally help in training the younger ones from the proceed of his ventures.
- General public: In the related development, they can be of gain to the study, if he/she is able to adjust properly in all ramification. The retirees will be of help to them by being invited to the ceremony going on in the society, developmental strive where he/she can make a donation for the welfare of the society and humanity in general.
Scope of the Study
This study is concerned with the adjustment dimensions for secondary school teacher retirees in the Onueke Education zone of Ebonyi State. It will also focus on the variables such as psychological, sociological, economical, vocational, political, and spiritual dimensions of the retirees. In relation to both male and female retirees in the Onueke Education zone of Ebonyi State which is located in both urban and rural areas of the central senatorial zone with its forms of retirement as voluntary, compulsory, and mandatory retirement. However, this study cannot be derived from its focus.
In order to conduct this research, the following research questions will guide the study:
1. What are the psychological dimensions of adjustment among secondary school teacher retirees?
2. What are the sociological pattern of adjustment dimensions for teacher retirees in the Onueke Education Zone?
3. What are the economical adjustment dimensions among secondary school teacher retirees?
4. What are the vocational adjustment dimensions for teacher retirees in the Onueke Education zone?
5. What are the political pattern of adjustment among secondary school teacher retirees?
6. What are the spiritual dimensions of adjustment among secondary school teacher retirees?
The following null hypothesis which will be tested at a P 0.05 level of significance, were also formulated to guide the study:
(1) There will be no significant difference in the mean responses of male and female retiree teachers in their psychological dimension of adjustment.
(2) There will be no significant difference in the mean responses of urban and rural areas of teachers retiree in their sociological dimension of adjustment.
(3) There will be no significant difference in the mean responses of Age and number of years of teachers retiree in their economical dimension of adjustment..