IMPACT OF RETIREMENT ON STRESS LEVELS OF RETIRED PRIMARY SCHOOL TEACHERS BETWEEN 1995-2004: A CASE OF RACHUONYO DISTRICT, KENYA

ABSTRACT
An assessment of the stress levels of retirees is crucial for the success of retirement counselling. In Kenya, primary school teachers constitute majority of the country‘s public service, yet no studies have been conducted to investigate the impact of retirement on stress levels of retired primary school teachers. The purpose of this study was, therefore, to investigate the impact of retirement on stress levels of retired primary school teachers in Rachuonyo district, Kenya. Guided by specific research objectives, the study targeted the impact of counselling, individual attributes, perception and preparation for retirement of retired primary school teachers in Rachuonyo district, Kenya. To realise these objectives, the study adopted a descriptive survey in carrying out the research since no treatment was given to the study subjects before the research. The target population was 449 retired primary school teachers who retired between 1995 and 2004.To ensure representation proportionate sampling was done and 95 retired primary school teachers were sampled. A set of questionnaires was administered to the retired teachers available in the reseacher‘s contact location as well as to the retired teachers at the time they visited the D.E.O‘s office, Rachuonyo within the research period. Descriptive statistics were used to analyse the data. The inferential statistics used was the Pearson‘s correlation and the Statistical Package for Social Sciences(SPSS)version 12.1 was used in the data analysis. The study revealed that the impact of retirement on stress levels of retired primary school teachers in Rachuonyo is high, however, a good number of the respondents seemed not to be aware of the need to be counselled and where to get the counselling service to prepare them for retirement. The study also revealed that stress manifests itself differently in the respondents with signs such as feeling trouble to sleep, headache, making constant movements and the like. Lastly, the study revealed that majority of the respondents were between 57and 59 years of age. This study, therefore, concluded that majority of primary school teachers in the district retire without receiving retirement counselling. The researcher recommended that the Teachers‘Service Commission should set up counselling units in every district to provide effective counselling services to the teachers to prepare them for retirement and that further research should be conducted to evaluate factors that cause stress of retired primary school teachers in the district and possibly in the country.

CHAPTER ONE
INTRODUCTION
Background of the Study
Reports have indicated that serving as well as retired teachers experience stress. Retired teachers have particularly been singled out as experiencing frustration and stress especially in their attempt to claim their pensions (Mumero 2005; Wachira, 2005). Much of the literature that is available has explored stress among the serving teachers leaving a gap on retirement stress and adjustment.

Retirement has become the major normative event of the second half of life (Ekerdt,Vinick, & Bosse, 1989).The variable consequences and the strategies individuals use to negotiate this event are the concern of health professionals. Retirement is no longer just few years of rest from rigorous work. It is a developmental stage that may occupy 30 years of one‘s life (Ebersole & Hess 1990). A great number of older people leave the workforce either willingly or unwillingly because of ill health. Those who retire in ill health fare poorly in retirement, regardless of their willingness to retire. This may be because retirement is frequently more sudden for those in ill health. They may, therefore, be less prepared financially or psychologically than those who retire as planned. Other factors influencing retirement adjustment include physical health, economic status, attitude of others and work related fulfilment Craig (1996). Quinn and Burkhauser (1990) as cited by Craig (1999) argue that adjustment to retirement will highly depend on work related fulfilment. If one is not comfortable with his job, disengagement will be a strain and such a person may never find satisfaction outside his job. This problem is worse for the less educated, the financially strained and those with few social or political involvements. Primary school retirees fit this description. Despite the fact that the aforementioned description fits Kenya‘s retired primary school teachers, no attempt has been made to present strategies for stress adjustment counselling. Personality is an important determinant of individuals‘ stress levels. Personality is deeply ingrained and relatively enduring patterns of thought, feeling, and behaviour. Personality usually refers to that which is unique about individuals—the characteristics that distinguish each person from other people. Thought, emotion, and behaviour as such do not constitute a personality; it does, however, underlie these elements. Personality implies predictability about how a person will act or react under different circumstances (Microsoft, 2005).

Retirement counselling can help individuals to define this view by assisting them in telling their vocational stories and defining the essential, adaptive, and dramatic features of the self at work. These features will include how the self has responded to (and defended against) work activities and routines, how it has adapted to varying levels of status, role complexity and compensation and how it has functioned interpersonally in work relationships. Such counselling for vocational script development assists people in the character development which is critical in the satisfaction of individuals. Personal career counselling can assist people who are about to enter retirement, or in retirement in becoming aware of their perceptions of their vocational roles. It can do so through encouraged reflection on, reminiscence about, and definition of the various aspects of their work roles, how those roles become formed, and how those roles played out in the context of their family and social relationships. This encouraged reflection can result in the development of vocational scripts adaptive views of the self at work. These views then provide the role definition necessary for people to feel productive and responsible and therefore satisfied with retirement.

Retirement counselling can become more effective by admitting the existence of an enduring vocational script‘. This critical concept however has not been articulated as a psychological, social and emotional reality that has implications for the planning design and enjoyment of one‘s retirement. Retirement planning and counselling typically focus on assisting people in effective financial security and responding to concerns about housing, social support network, health care and aging. Too often, even when these needs are addressed satisfactorily, and even when retirees engage in leisure and volunteer or part time work activity, retired people continue to feel bereft of role, status and usefulness (Simon, 1995).The present study is an attempt to illuminate the stress levels among retired primary school teachers with an aim of presenting a description. It is hoped that retirement counsellors will use the findings to identify counselling areas.

Statement of the Problem.
Life is a progression of stressful experiences, which result from variables in the environment. The transition from full time employment to complete retirement is an important step in a worker‘s life. Retirement of primary school teachers has been identified as a significantly stressful event that does not mean a cessation of a job, but can also lead to loss or reduction of income, influence authority, status, relationship, activity, professional skill and an increase in unstructured time. Despite this fact, no researcher has assessed the impact of retirement on the stress levels of retired primary school teachers. Notably primary school teachers form a large population of the country‘s public service in Kenya.

Purpose of the Study.
The purpose of this study was to assess the impact of retirement on stress levels of retired primary school teachers in Rachuonyo district, Kenya.

Objectives of the Study.
The objectives of the study were: -

i. To determine the impact of counselling on stress levels of retired primary school teachers.

ii. To determine the impact of individual attributes of retired primary school teachers on their stress levels.

iii. To determine whether the retired primary school teachers‘ perception of retirement has an impact on their stress levels.

iv. To determine whether lifestyle and environmental factors have any impact on stress levels of retired primary school teachers.

Research Questions
The study sought to provide answers to the following specific research questions: -

i. What is the impact of counselling on stress levels of retired primary school teachers?

ii. Do individual attributes of retired primary school teachers‘ impact on their stress levels?

iii. Does the retired primary school teachers‘ perception of retirement impact on their stress levels?

iv. Does lifestyle and environmental factors have any impact on stress levels of retired primary school teachers?

Significance of the Study
It is expected that the findings of this study may prepare serving teachers for retirement adjustment. Furthermore, retirement counsellors could use the results of the study to develop counselling strategies. The Teachers‘ Service Commission may also use the findings of the study to improve the conditions of serving teachers in a bid to prepare them to face retirement more effectively. The Ministry of Education may also use the findings to improve conditions of service as well as help in the development of the retirement adjustment mechanisms. Other government ministries may use the findings of the study selectively to help the employees in the various ministries adjust or cope with potential stress in retirement.

Scope of the Study
The study was limited to studying the impact of retirement on stress levels of retired primary school teachers in Rachuonyo District, Nyanza Province-Kenya. Although the target population was retired primary school teachers, the findings may be applied to all retired primary school teachers across the country with caution since school teachers live in different environmental set ups. Nonetheless, the findings of the study are still hoped to serve as crucial pointer to the related problems among retired primary school teachers.

Limitations of the Study.
The area of study was vast and finding the required number of retired primary school teachers was not easy. The researcher was not in a position to give the respondents incentives inform of money or otherwise hence some respondents were reluctant to fill in the questionnaires within the required time. This study was limited to the retired primary school teachers in Rachuonyo district hence the findings may be applied to all retired primary school teachers across the country with caution since school teachers live in different environmental set-ups.

Assumptions of the Study
The basic assumptions for the study included the following:-

i. It was assumed that the researcher would be able to reach the retired primary school teachers and that they would provide genuine information.

ii. Retirement has an impact on the stress levels of retired primary school teachers.

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Item Type: Kenyan Material  |  Attribute: 49 pages  |  Chapters: 1-5
Format: MS Word  |  Price: KSh900  |  Delivery: Within 30Mins.
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