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New Recruitment Process for Teachers in Public Primary Schools and Its Implication to Quality Teachers in Tanzania

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Background to the problem

General introduction

Human resource is one of the most significant developments in the field of organizations which has been given increasing importance. People are vital to organizations as they offer perspectives, values and attributes to organizational life; and when managed effectively, these human traits can be of considerable benefits to the organization (Ekwoaba et al, 2015). This is so because the development of people, their competencies, and the process development of the total organization are the fulcrum of human resource management (HRM) (Mullins, 1999 and Djabatey, 2012).

Recruitment is one of the functions of HRM which has a great impact on the organization performance. Walker (2009) argues that recruitment process is an important part of HRM which should be done with proper strategic planning. With this regard, before any link with applicants, human resource planning must check out current and future staffing needs including identifying the optimum number of employees.

According to National University of Ireland (NUI) (2006) most recruitment processes comprise the elements of subjective judgement inherent in them. But treating job applicants in a professional and positive manner is more likely to leave them, whether they are successful or not, with a positive view of the organization and how it has dealt with the applicants. However, experience shows that a successful appointment can bring favourable results which impact on the wider aspects of organizational life while a poor one can have damaging effects far outside the organization in which it is made. Also, the recruitment and selection of employees provides an opportunity for the organization to present itself in a favourable light (NUI, 2006).

Recruitment process in any organization is a serious HRM function as the success of any organization or efficiency in service delivery or high productivity of staff depends on the quality of its workforce who was recruited into the organization through recruitment assignment (Aduma & Iyida, 2016). Since recruitment involve getting the best applicant for a job, it is only reasonable that recruitment procedures and policies that provide a large pool of qualified applicants will have a substantial influence over the quality and type of skills new employees possess or their productivity (Obikeze & Obi, 2004). In relation to this notion, Bohlander et al, (2001) notes that managers should understand the objectives, policies and practices used for recruitment including having right information upon which to base their decisions if productivity in organizations are to be met.

Similarly, it is argued that organization’s recruitment policies and practices shape the employee behaviours and attitudes that consequently will have impact on productivity (Robbins, 2005). The major part of an organization’s overall resourcing strategies is strongly associated with recruitment process. This in advance identifies and secures people needed for an organization to survive and succeed in the short to medium-term (Elwood, 1996). Indeed, the main purpose of recruitment is to form a pool of suitably qualified candidates to enable the selection of the best candidates for the organization, by attracting more and more employees to apply in the organization in which the right candidate is chosen to occupy a position in the organization (Gamage, 2014). Moreover, it is said that there is a positive and significant relationship between recruitment and the performance of an enterprise (Sang, 2005). Generally, from the discussion above, the conclusion can be drawn that when the best qualified people are recruited for the job, productivity or effectiveness and efficiency are likely to increase. Therefore, HR managers at all levels of the organisation need to pay much attention when planning to recruit human resources.

Basically, in HRM, teachers like any other human resources in the organization pass through a certain recruitment process which may be more or less similar with other cadres. Thus, teachers’ recruitment procedures are crucial in being one of the significant factors in providing effective teachers (Berry, et al 2009). It is true that there has been an overarching concern over the importance of teacher education and teacher preparation programme over the recent decades because they represent one of the input-driven approaches toward educational reform. However, little research has delved into the issue of recruitment procedures and practices in order to shed light on how teachers are basically recruited, selected, screened and hired (ibd).

It is realistic that a teacher is part and parcel of the teaching and learning process in any nation. According to Abdou (2012), the processes of teachers’ preparation and recruitment should be viewed as a continuum since all of the above elements are interrelated. Effective recruitment strategies aim at providing schools equitably with quality teachers. In the light of this perception, it is wise to say that the appropriate recruitment procedure impacts on the quality of the teachers. On the other hand, educational experts and researchers argue that teachers’ recruitment is one of the most significant determinants of students’ academic achievement (Berry et al, 2010).

According to Tanzania Education Sector Analysis (TESA) (2009), primary and secondary schools teachers are civil servants and their recruitment is guided by the public service Act of Employment, Issue Nº2, of September 2008, thus, the role of the Ministry of Education and Vocational Training (MoEVT) is to train enough qualified teachers to meet the demand of the schools and to monitor the adequacy of teachers’ numbers and qualifications while, the President’s Office for Regional Administration and Local Government (PO-RALG) is responsible for the coordination of teachers’ recruitment and their deployment across local government authorities (LGAs).

Therefore, the process of recruitment of both primary and secondary teachers has to be done in consideration with teachers’ quality simply because the better achievement in education to students depends on the qualification of the teacher. However, this may be affected by some factors including fund constraints. The study of Mwasi (2012) depicts that, inadequate budgetary allocation is the challenge facing municipal councils in Tanzania. It is proposed that, in order to ensure that all students have teachers with the subject-matter knowledge and teaching skills necessary to help them achieve to high academic standards, regardless of their individual learning styles or needs there should be substantial funding. The fund enables recruiting and training highly qualified teachers (Darling-Hammond, 2010).

In terms of competence, some scholars have argued that teacher competence is a function of teacher qualifications (Aghenta, 2000). How competent a teacher could be in teaching seems to depend largely on teacher’s qualification. This contention is supported by Mullen’s (1993) argument that the level of a teacher’s subject matter competence is a prime predictor of pupils’ learning. He argued that it is not only the qualifications obtained by a teacher that could contribute to a teacher’s quality but actual achievement in terms of subject matter competence.

According to some scholars, most of the developing countries face the challenge of shortage and qualified teachers. This has been pointed out by Zafeirakou (2007), Cooper & Alvarado (2006), and OECD (2005) that, one main challenge that the sub-Saharan region countries have to deal with is to recruit schools with teachers that are sufficient in both quality and quantity. Tanzania like any other Sub-Saharan region countries has no exceptional in recruiting the quality teachers through the appropriate recruiting criteria. With such experience, HAKI ELIMU (2008) pointed out that Tanzania needs quality teachers who will help to produce experts in order that, the problems of ignorance can be solved. The minimum education qualification of primary schools teachers is Grade A and above certificate qualification while the minimum qualification of secondary school teachers’ is diploma and bachelor degree (TESA, 2009). In such circumstances, it is important to adhere to these qualifications when planning for recruitment.

Statement of the Problem

For a long time, the Ministry responsible for education has been recruiting teachers directly from educational institutions (crash training programme teachers) and giving them short training ready to overcome the shortage of teachers in Tanzania. As a result secondary school teachers who did not have enough teaching knowledge were forced to attend in-service training and attain either Diploma in Education or Bachelor in Education in order to provide the required knowledge to the students. The same applied to Primary school teachers, the majority of whom had Grade A Certificates in Education and even some had grade C certificates which were attained during Universal Primary Education (UPE) crash training programme (Laddunuri, 2012).

Such recruitment system of this nature leads to deployment of unqualified teachers and this has been a common problem in Tanzania. This is according to the study of Laddunuri (2012) which revealed a high proportion of unqualified teachers in both rural and urban areas inthe country. Indeed, recruitment of unqualified teachers not only affects students’ academic performance, but also, it leads to setbacks of education sector. This supports Bryant (2014) argument that, lack of qualified teachers is one of many factors contributing to the low educational advancements in Tanzania.

Currently there is a new recruitment process for Public Primary School (PPS) and Public Secondary Schools (PSS) teachers coordinated by the ministry of PO-RALG whereby teachers have to apply for the vacancies after their teachers training studies when announcement of the vacancies has been issued. According to the ministry of PO-RALG (2017), the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology announced the teaching vacancies for the first time on 1st December, 2016 in which teachers were required to apply for. On 12th April, 2017 the ministry of PO-RALG issued the name of selected applicants in which they were required to report direct to their respective schools posted from the ministry.

The new recruitment system used raise concern on various issues including the quality of teachers. For stance, the new recruitment system is considered as an appropriate way to recruit teachers of good teaching qualification in which application system for the candidate is used and the qualified teachers are selected and recruited rather than recruiting all teachers directly from colleges immediately after graduating. Also, it is thought that the new recruitment system intends to limit the number of teachers to be recruited. Therefore, in such scenario the study seeks to assess the new recruitment system.

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Objectives of the study

Specifically the study aims at:

  1. Identify criteria used in the new recruitment process.
  2. Examining the effects brought about by this new recruitment process.
  3. Analyzing the constraints encountered in this recruitment process
  4. Giving recommendations on the new recruitment process.

Research questions

On studying the new recruitment process for teachers in PPS and its implication to quality teachers in Tanzania the following questions will be asked;

  1. What are the criteria used in the new recruitment process?
  2. What are the effects of the new recruitment process?
  3. What are the constraints encountered from such recruiting process?
  4. What are the appropriate recommendations on the new recruitment process?

Significance of the study

This study will add new knowledge to the following:

The study will enable human resource management practitioners to implement the policies pertaining recruitment process. Also, the study will help policy makers and planners to formulate and restructure policies that will improve the teachers’ quality and hence providing best education.

The study will add to the existing literature on human resource planning and development particularly on public teachers’ recruitment process. Therefore, this will be important to the academic community and decision makers who deal directly with the recruitment and to make meaningful proposals and suggestion to improve the recruitment criteria to public schools teachers in Tanzania.

It will afford the ministry responsible for teachers’ recruitment in Tanzania (PO-RALG) the opportunity to identify the effectiveness and efficiency of the new recruitment process and challenges facing the system and seek solutions to them.

Scope of the study

The study will be delimited to investigate new recruitment process for teachers. The study is further delimited to PPS teachers in schools and in the head office of PO-RALGA in Dar es Salaam, and thus, the availability and accessibility of information for a researcher will be easy. Also, this will facilitate mobility to target population as well as to cut down cost comparatively.

Literature review

Methods of recruitment

Herman (1994) identifies two methods of recruitment namely; internal and external recruitment.

Internal recruitment.

According to Herman (1994), there are three ways to recruit from within the organization. One of them is involving the manager to present a transfer plan of a particular person to the supervisor to whom that particular employee is currently reporting. If there is an agreement between the parties a transfer plan of specific key position for promotion is made. The method is considered to be unfair and biased by other candidates especially for those who are seeking leadership vacancies. The other two internal recruitment ways suggested by Herman are job posting and searching employer’s skill inventories and succession plans

External recruitment.

The external recruitment methods involve recruiting employees from outside of the organization. This is when, for example, employees in the organization are say, transferred or promoted within the organization there becomes a vacant position which should be filled, in some cases, externally.

Recruitment procedures

Recruitment is a process by which an organisation ensures that the qualified candidates fill the position applied for. Gross and DeArmond (2011) argue that recruitment as part of a human capital strategy that appropriately matches the requirement of public schools, often means approaching teacher recruitment and selection differently. According to the Delaware Center for Public Education (CPE) (2008), Delaware Department of Education (DDE) (2012), and Centre on Great Teachers and Leaders (CGT) (2015), the key comprehensive process for teacher recruitment and any other human resource include;

Examining current status of staffing needs

Before developing a comprehensive recruitment approach, the current status of staffing needs and recruitment should be examined. For example, the assessment of staffing needs involves qualifications and experience in which the current employees available with their education qualification and working experience should be considered. Also, the number of candidate need to fill the gap available should be identified (DDE, 2012).

Developing timelines for recruitment and selection

The most effective recruitment and selection is a year-round job that requires creativity and entrepreneurship to make sure that the best candidates are recruited (Gross & DeArmond, 2011). Recruitment by the end of the year enables organization including school to have an opportunity to compete for top candidates (TNTP, 2012).

Developing recruitment materials

A key aspect of a comprehensive recruitment process is for an organization to have the updated clear recruitment materials available for applicants through various sources and strategies. Those recruitment materials include; recruitment brochures, recruitment webpage, email address with application information (TNTP, 2012).

Creating an ideal candidate profile for screening and selection

Before beginning any recruiting process TNTP (2012) recommends that a general idea that is attached to the vision, culture, and performance expectations of organization should be developed for a candidate.This will be helpful for the applicants to reflect on their comfort level with these competencies before applying. In addition, it is suggested that the general idea to is be used during the screening and selection process.

Aligning all recruitment messages

Hayes & Behrstock (2009) note that recruitment messages have to address organization’s goal. For instance, if it is to recruit teachers committed to raising student performance, all messages should communicate that goal consistently.

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New Recruitment Process for Teachers in Public Primary Schools and Its Implication to Quality Teachers in Tanzania. (2022, July 14). Edubirdie. Retrieved December 8, 2022, from
“New Recruitment Process for Teachers in Public Primary Schools and Its Implication to Quality Teachers in Tanzania.” Edubirdie, 14 Jul. 2022,
New Recruitment Process for Teachers in Public Primary Schools and Its Implication to Quality Teachers in Tanzania. [online]. Available at: <> [Accessed 8 Dec. 2022].
New Recruitment Process for Teachers in Public Primary Schools and Its Implication to Quality Teachers in Tanzania [Internet]. Edubirdie. 2022 Jul 14 [cited 2022 Dec 8]. Available from:
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