Date of Award

5-2014

Degree Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Department

Educational Leadership and School Counseling

Committee Chair

Dr. Thelma Roberson

Committee Chair Department

Educational Leadership and School Counseling

Committee Member 2

Dr. Michael Ward

Committee Member 2 Department

Educational Leadership and School Counseling

Committee Member 3

Dr. David Lee

Committee Member 3 Department

Educational Leadership and School Counseling

Committee Member 4

Dr. Leslie Locke

Committee Member 4 Department

Educational Leadership and School Counseling

Committee Member 5

Dr. J.T. Johnson

Committee Member 5 Department

Educational Leadership and School Counseling

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to determine the relationships among job satisfaction, professional efficacy, student and school performance, and teacher absenteeism in Mississippi. This study also addressed methods that can be used by policymakers to better ensure low rates of absenteeism. The study measured the relationship between teachers’ satisfaction with workplace conditions, socioeconomic status of schools, teacher compensation, professional efficacy, student and school performance, and rates of teacher absenteeism. In addition, the study provided participants with the opportunity to suggest methods that can be used by policymakers to better ensure low rates of absenteeism.

The study involved a mixed methods design that yielded quantitative and qualitative data. The study used an original instrument entitled Teacher Job Satisfaction and Professional Efficacy (TJSPE). The instrument utilized 45 questions to gather data about teacher job satisfaction, professional efficacy, student and school performance, and teacher absenteeism. Teachers of grades 3-5 in the state of Mississippi were asked to participate in the study.

The quantitative portion of the study indicated that there was not a relationship between workplace conditions and rates of teacher absenteeism. There was not a significant relationship between satisfaction with compensation and rates of teacher absenteeism. And, there was not a significant relationship between professional efficacy and rates of teacher absenteeism. On the other hand, there was a significant moderate inverse relationship between the socioeconomic status of schools and rates of teacher absenteeism. Contrary to much of the extant literature, there was a significant moderate relationship between Mississippi’s school performance metric, QDI, and rates of teacher absenteeism.

Responses to the qualitative portion of the study provided a set of recommendations that administrators and policymakers might implement in order to improve working conditions, satisfaction with compensation, professional efficacy, and teacher attendance. Respondents indicated a need for more time in order to be effective teachers. Respondents indicated a desire for compensation packages to be more attractive. Respondents indicated a desire for greater administrative support in order to gain a better sense of self-efficacy among faculty members. Finally, respondents indicated that administrative support, recognition, and professional development would be beneficial in improving teacher attendance.

The study also included recommendations for further research to assist in decreasing teacher absenteeism. It was the researcher’s goal to add useful insights and policy considerations related that might lessen the occurrence of teacher absenteeism. It is hoped that this study furthers that aim.

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