DIFFERENT PATHWAYS INTO TEACHING IN RURAL PRIMARY AND MIDDLE SCHOOLS: MULTIPLE CASE STUDIES OF FEMALE AND MALE TEACHERS IN MOUNTAIN SOCIETIES OF NORTHERN PAKISTAN.
Shah, Nooruddin Gulbahar
MetadataShow full item record
The purpose of this qualitative, multiple case study is to explore the different pathways into teaching in rural primary and middle schools. As a conceptual framework, the continuum of teacher learning and occupational choice theory were used to study teacher preparation and recruitment. Research participants included twelve teachers (seven male and five female) from four different types of schools. Each participant (teacher) was a case and the schools were mainly work sites where teachers were interviewed. The schools selected for data collection were located in a remote mountain village of Pakistan’s Gilgit-Baltistan province, where 86 percent of the total population live in rural areas. The findings of this study problematize teacher policy and practice. Entry into the teaching profession is generally assumed to be a simplistic process. However, this study yielded new insights and revealed that the real-life experiences of teachers varied and were more complex, with multiple factors influencing teachers’ entry into teaching. Wide disparities were found between and among male and female teachers’ working conditions and pay, and female teachers were particularly disadvantaged. More importantly, the findings in this study provide justification for the government to continue recruiting more female teachers until at least an equal proportion of government permanent jobs are held by women in rural schools of Pakistan. The study confirmed teachers learning to teach in different stages. The assumption of linearity, or that teachers not teaching before preservice, was questionable, as the findings indicated that nearly all the participants acquired at least one preservice teacher education certificate while they were already serving as a teacher. Teachers’ perceptions on impact and influence of preservice and inservice training presented mixed findings. This study expands the scope of existing research on teachers’ pathways into teaching by adding an in-depth examination of rural teachers’ perceptions and experiences. Findings of this study will be useful for government, teacher associations/unions, donors and civil society organizations engaged in teacher policy, preparation and recruitment in Pakistan and in other developing countries. Future research is needed to explore the institutional perspectives on teacher preparation and recruitment. Also, more in-depth research is needed to further unravel barriers for female teachers and explore ways to remove those barriers for recruiting more female teachers in rural government schools.