This chapter contains an overview of human resource management. It contains the background to the problem which gives the origin of the problem being studied. The chapter also has the statement of the problem, purpose of the study, objectives of the study, research questions, significance of the study, limitations and delimitations, assumptions of the study as well as operational definitions of terms.

Background of the Study

Education is recognized as the most important form of human resource  development. The universal Declaration of Human Rights has emphasized the importance of education as a fundamental human right and a necessary element of development (United Nations, 1948). In its technical sense, education is the formal process by which the society through schools, colleges, universities and other institutions deliberately transmit its cultural heritage and accumulated knowledge, values and skills to the next generation (Aventrup, Liang, & Nelleman, 2004). Throughout the history of humanity, education has been an important aspect of human life. It is a cornerstone of economic and social development. It improves the productive capacity of societies and their political, economic and scientific institutions. Due to the many benefits of education, governments in both the developed and developing countries allocate much of their resources to education. UNESCO (2005) notes that, this has resulted to considerable growth in education causing it to be one of the largest sector in most countries to date. This important

education is  transmitted  through schools. The effective school  management should

have proper management in curriculum and instruction, physical facility management, community relation management, financial and human resource management.

According to Okumbe (1998), schools are set up to enable a society to achieve its objectives through teaching and learning. Schools should be properly managed so as to effectively and efficiently achieve their goals. For efficient and effective administration, headteachers who are managers need to have adequate  administrative skills as well as human and physical resources. On management, headteachers are trained on proper planning, organizing, directing, coordinating and evaluation of education programmes. Planning helps managers to set long-term and short-term goals of an institution.

An organization needs to be effective and efficient in achieving its goals, therefore, the people in the organization need to be properly managed so as to achieve the organization goals, Saleem (2010). Watson (1986) affirms that human beings working in an organization, both individually and within various coalitions will set out to meet their own purposes, values and interests within the work setting. Each member has certain roles, objectives and responsibilities that may be frustrated by others who induce barriers and do not co-operate (Brett 1993). Ensuring that this does not lead to total failure in meeting organizational purposes there should be a central human management role (Watson, 1986).

The diverse individuals who make up the school organization have their own views and opinions regarding pertinent issues, operations, decisions-making and other day-

to-day activities in the management of the total school organization.  The headteacher should be tactful enough to handle all persons in school considering their many diverse needs and opinions.

Managing people in a working environment has been an issue of a critical concern ever since the Hawthorn studies of 1960 by Elton Mayo who evaluated the human resource relation practices that existed in an organization. Since then, the issue of managing human resource in a work environment has always occupied a central role in today‟s organization. There has been continuous change in human resource development and therefore, human resource managers face challenges when dealing with human resource administration. They must respond by taking gradual change in the nature of the field, current practices and overall human resource management policies, mission and vision (Chiavenato, 2001).

As school managers, headteachers should have skills in recruiting, selection, orientation and induction, training and teacher motivation. A study by Saleem (2010) indicated that managers should follow the correct procedure when recruiting the staff, when selecting, in orientation and induction, in training and development of employees, in employee appraisal, taking care of their welfare and in dismissing or retiring the employees. These steps should be clearly followed in human resource management. In a school setup the headteacher has teaching staff, non-teaching staff and students as human resources to be managed. The institutional objectives should be achieved alongside the individual‟s personal objectives with the help of the head teacher.

Generally, human resource management is part of management which is concerned with people at work and their relationship within the organization. Nakpodia (2010) noted that human resource management was born out of failure of personnel management to manage people effectively in the pursuit of the organizational goals. Hence, the concept of human resource management is emphasized more than the personnel management in improving the productivity of human resource in an organization.

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