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This study examined the influence of teachers’ gender, educational and teaching experience on teacher’s career satisfaction. It further looked at the contribution of the limited literature on teachers’ career satisfaction in developing countries like Nigeria. It critically examined the influence of teachers’ gender, educational and teaching experience on teachers’ career satisfaction and students’ academic performance. The instrument used for the study was tagged teachers’ career satisfaction questionnaire (TCSQ). The instrument had a reliable coefficient of 0.87. The result of the analysis showed that female teachers were slightly more satisfied than male teachers: the higher the educational attainment of teachers the lower the teachers’ career satisfaction; and that the most experienced teachers were least satisfied. Sources of dissatisfaction are low salary structure, low public image and lack of self esteem of teachers, due to the fact that highly qualified and experienced teachers are not being rewarded adequately. Some factors are predictable but other are less so having to do with societal values of teachers in Nigeria. It was recommended that government and other stakeholders in education should implement measures that will ensure a high level of career satisfaction for teachers in all ramifications.
The term ‘satisfaction’ is often used to describe a condition an individual found his/her self after a particular occurrence. In the developed world, teachers’ career satisfaction has been an issue of concern for many years. Hence perennial factors, such as student academic performance, helping students, positive relationship with colleagues and self growth have been associated with teachers’ career satisfaction. The other factors such as perceived low status, low pay, lack of professional autonomy and deprofessionalization has been linked to teachers’ dissatisfaction as stated in Zembylas and Papanastasion, (2007).
However, research exploring the sources and influence of teachers’ career satisfaction in developing countries is relatively limited Hean and Garrett, (2001) and Abiodun and Gbadebo (2012) saw it as a term used to describe state of inner feelings that follows interaction with people or objects. The authors further stated that it has also been directly substituted with other feeling words such as gratification, happiness, compensation, fulfillment, joy, excitement, self actualization. The Microsoft encounter dictionary (2009) stated that satisfaction has four different interpretations. One of them is the feeling of pleasure that comes when a need or a desire is fulfilled, the other is happiness one expressed when one is happy with the way something has been arranged or done, compensation for an injury or loss and the fulfillment of a need, claim and desires. There are many endeavour’s in life that one could derive satisfaction from, but this paper has to do with satisfaction one gets from his career that will influence his performance.
Gosnell (2000) sees career satisfaction as the degree to which people are happy with their careers. Essien (2002) viewed it as an emotional response to a job situation and often determined by how outcome meets or exceeds expectation. Secondary school teachers are currently facing many challenges in education and in the society, which may well affect their levels of job satisfaction (Adenike 2011). This raises concern regarding the attitudes of educators towards their work and their levels of job satisfaction or dissatisfaction she sated. Kesterner as cited in Adenike (2011) posited that almost half of new staff leaves the field during the first five years of their employment. This should be of great concern to all employers because unhappy and dissatisfied employees may mean poor performance and high staff turnover.